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Hearing details Glendale man's violent death

Detectives describe in grim detail a killing they say was driven by money.

March 05, 2014|By Veronica Rocha, veronica.rocha@latimes.com

A Glendale man who was brutally beaten and later shot to death had briefly escaped his attackers and attempted to chase down a passing motorist as he yelled and pleaded for help because he feared he was going to be killed, detectives testified in court this week.

Moments before, the passing motorist had urged the men attacking 33-year-old Joshua West to stop last April 24 in the 10700 block of Vinedale Street in Sun Valley, but she continued driving because “she was too afraid to stop and let him in,” Los Angeles Police Det. Joshua Byers testified Tuesday during a preliminary hearing for West’s alleged attackers.

Soon after, a Mercedes sped past her vehicle and she saw two flashes from gunshots, Byers said in Los Angeles County Superior Court in San Fernando.

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West’s autopsy revealed that he was shot once through his heart, Los Angeles Police Det. Mario Santana said during his testimony on Monday.

He also had slash wounds to his throat, a bite mark on his left arm and his right leg was broken.

Santana testified that West's estranged boyfriend and co-defendant, Hovanes “John” Maskovian, later said in a police interview he had tried to bite his brother to get him to stop the beating, but had instead accidentally bitten West.

After West had tried to run away from his attackers, Hovanes Maskovian also told Santana that he allegedly got into West's Mercedes to go after him and help him.

He claimed that he lost control of the Mercedes, which veered directly in West's path and struck him, Santana said.

Prosecutors allege West’s violent killing was driven by money.

They claim Hovanes Maskovian, his brother Hachik “Kriss” Maskovian, 29, and 19-year-old Nazaret “Nick” Bayamdzhyan, schemed to kill West and collect on his life insurance policy.

Witnesses told investigators that they had seen West being brutally beaten by two men — one of whom allegedly slammed West's head with the passenger door of a tow truck.

Police said West's killing was tied to multiple crime scenes in Sun Valley.

That day, Santana testified that Hachik Maskovian told him he had left his home on Vinedale to pick up Bayamdzhyan to watch a hockey game.

After the game, he dropped off Bayamdzhyan, went home to get his things and then headed to another friend’s home because he had a job interview the next day.

But Santana testified that Hachik Maskovian never made it to the interview.

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