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Convicted killer gets life in prison

Man shot and killed 20-year-old during a Glendale home invasion in 2005.

May 01, 2013|By Veronica Rocha, veronica.rocha@latimes.com

A 51-year-old man was sentenced Wednesday to life without the possibility of parole for the murder of a Glendale resident who was shot to death in 2005 during a home invasion robbery, officials said.

Vrej Zadurian was convicted in March of first-degree murder in the death of 20-year-old Christopher Shahnazari on Nov. 1, 2005 at his Glendale home.

He was also convicted of home invasion robbery.

Christopher Shahnazari's brother, Sevan Shahnazari, had previously described the loss and long legal process as "very painful." Attempts to reach the family Wednesday were unsuccessful.

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Christopher Shahnazari was gunned down after he walked into his home on Bruce Street to discover that a group of three or four intruders had blindfolded and beat his mother.

He told the intruders that his family didn't have any money, but that didn't stop them from hauling him into another room, where they beat him. Meanwhile, his mother managed to escape and ran out of the home. That's when she heard the gunshot that killed her son.

Christopher Shahnazari was shot in the chest and later died in a hospital.

The case took many turns over the years, according to his brother.

At first, police arrested Edmond Ovasapyan after Shahnazari's mother said he looked like one of the perpetrators. But Ovasapyan was later released from custody and exonerated after DNA evidence collected at the crime scene tied Zadurian to the shooting death.

Zadurian was already in state prison when Ovasapyan was arrested. Zadurian's attorney on Wednesday declined to comment.

A jury later awarded Ovasapyan $1.31 million after he sued the city and two Glendale police detectives for violating his civil rights.

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Follow Veronica Rocha on Google+ and on Twitter: @VeronicaRochaLA.

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