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Gang members found guilty of killing Trader Joe’s employee in Echo Park

Michael David and daughter | Courtesy Jeanne David

Michael David and daughter | Courtesy Jeanne David

ECHO PARK – A jury today found two gang members guilty of second-degree murder in the May 2011 slaying of Michael David, a Trader Joe’s worker who was shot dead near his Echo Park home, according to Patch and City News Service.

While the jury rejected first-degree murder charges, the panel found that defendants Peter Michael Lopez, 26, and Hakop Jacko Sardaryan, 25, killed David for the benefit of a criminal street gang. Both men face up to 40 years to life in prison. Sentencing was scheduled for Dec. 11. Another defendant in the case,  Jeffrey Cardona, 27,  faces 17 years in prison after he pleaded no contest to voluntary manslaughter.

According to police, David, who had no gang ties, was chased down Sunset Boulevard by the suspects after a confrontation shortly after midnight on May 7, 2011. David collapsed near Sunset and Logan Street after being shot by the suspects. He died a few hours later at a hospital.

David, who was 30 at the time of the killing, worked at the Trader Joe’s in Silver Lake and was the father of a four-year-old girl.

In a 2011 interview, David’s mother, Jeanne David, said her son had moved into an Echo Park studio apartment about a year before he was killed.  He was a budding Rastafarian who had starting growing his hair long and braiding it, said David of her son, who she called Mickey.

“He truly was just like a modern, urban  hippie guy,” she said.  “He was a kind person.”

A 2011 photo of the sidewalk memorial for Michael David

A 2011 photo of the sidewalk memorial for Michael David



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28 comments

  1. Gang members are scum. Our (now disbanded) gang-related Neighborhood Council is a disgrace, and anyone who opposes the gang injunction should be ashamed.

  2. I don’t think my feelings matter, but as a feelings translated to the accusers priceless

  3. And now there’s a 4 year old without a dad. Congrats guys, you might have had a lousy upbringing but you’ve made someone else’s even moreso. And all for what exactly???

  4. Culturally Unwelcoming

    I didn’t realize these fuckers had been caught. To which particular set of local assholes do they belong?

  5. Mickey was a good dude. Always had a great personality and smile on at all times. I had the pleasure to work with him for a few years at Trader Joe’s. He brought a kind of energy and positive outlook on life that some can only dream of. I’m finally happy the 3 that took my friends life away from his daughter and all who knew and cared about Mickey. Are finally getting what they deserve. Not cruel enough of a punishment in my eyes though. Glad they will all be put away for a very long time.

  6. All these lives that were ruined by the one individual who started the argument and actually shot Michael.
    (Jeffrey Cardona Shooter).

    Being judged by those who look down on any individuals who looks or grew up different is not being judged by your peers.

    Sucks that someone who is near a person who commits a crime can be held liable as well even if they had no Idea what the intentions of the person could have been.

    Groups that hang out together are now deemed to be gang members according to this case.
    Gangs members are those who have organized themselves to benefit from their lives of crime.
    Not groups who somehow managed to stay away from being jumped into a gang voluntarily or even worse involuntarily.

    Prayers go out to all the families involved and hope justice comes to Cardona, the person who actually took a plea deal and conjured up a great story to get the best deal possible.
    If this was a gang, why didn’t Cardona get charged with the Gang Enhancement, if this was a Second degree Murder, how do two of the defendants get second Degree murder and One gets Voluntary Manslaughter.

  7. glass ell park whitey

    La Mirada Locos – A shot caller named Arley Bueno… Huge D Bag, already been let out twice for assault.

  8. As a resident from echo park, a real one not one that just moved in and took over, I know a criminal gang when I see one. And although this doesn’t make me a “gang expert” I can guarantee you that these guys are not gang members.

    Nonetheless, I’m all for justice. But wait, Cardona got a plea deal in not only this case but a prior one and went from getting 80-life to SEVENTEEN years!!!!??

    As the aggressor and the instigator shouldn’t he have gotten the same , if not, a worse verdict.

    Where’s the justice in that?

  9. Remember him well, we use to share jokes every time I went shopping at TJ’s he was such a nice guy that I was totally shocked when I heard of his murder, Theses animals are still not getting what they deserve but just the same lets hope that karma in a jail cell is waiting for them just around the corner.

    Mickey you are missed by your children and friends why these idiots took you life we will never know lets hope that the mending can now begin now that these idiots have received what the American justice system calls Justice……RIP my friend.

  10. Totally agree with anonymous2015 first of all the get away driver Rafael Ramirez was let out free with no charges and Jeffrey cardona the shooter was given the least amount of charges just cause him and his best friend Rafael Ramirez made up a fake story this was not gang related Jeffrey was always bullying people at local echo park bars !! he was extremely over weight to catch up with the white guy that ran from him so he decided to pull the trigger instead coward he blamed 2 innocent guys instead sad story can’t understand how the jury found 2 innocent guys guilty

  11. Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    Totally agree with anonymous2015 first of all the get away driver Rafael Ramirez was let out free with no charges and Jeffrey cardona the shooter was given the least amount of charges just cause him and his best friend Rafael Ramirez made up a fake story this was not gang related Jeffrey was always bullying people at local echo park bars !! he was extremely over weight to catch up with the white guy that ran from him so he decided to pull the trigger coward he blamed 2 innocent guys instead sad story can’t understand how the jury found 2 innocent guys guilty

  12. I too frequent the bars in echo park and have heard so many different stories of what truely happened that night but I can tell you 90% of the witnesses agree that the “snitch” (Cardona) was the actual shooter.

    With so many discrepancies and not enough evidence, I think the detective rushed into finding a guilty person. The trouble is you are all happy someone got caught but in reality it might be the wrong person. He will get out and do the same. Who will be next? Probably someone else you know.

    This state is one of, if not the only state that has gang injunction. All others fought against it because it’s not right. A group of three is considered a gang.

    Most prisons are privately owned so of course the system rushes through these cases. All for profit! Just like schools, hospitals etc.

    We’re all victims of the street in one way or another. Be it victim of a crime or victim of society.

  13. Good..scumbags. I hope they get the opportunity to toss some salads in the State Penitentiary. I have not an shred of mercy for a couple of low lifes that take an innocent life because they’re cowards.

  14. Guilty as charged!

    Having first hand knowledge of this case, it disgusts me people would irresponsibly comment without knowing the facts! The proof and evidence was overwhelming! In matter of fact, Lopez should have been guilty of first degree murder! Nevertheless, Lopez and Sardaryan will be in prison for the rest of his life. The detectives and district attorney did an amazing job in putting these scum bags away for a long time!

    • Since you are so disgusted by our lack of knowledge in this matter I invite you to shed some light on the case, Please tell us what you mean by “proof and evidence.”

    • Correct.. Agree with you if you weren’t even there why make up lies.. Most likely sadaryan or Lopez angry family trying to get him out of something he was clearly guilty of. There was enough proof and evidence from videos to witnesses they got the right guys and the justice system has worked to provide justice for Michael and his family. For all those ignorant people reasearch first before coming to a conclusion. If so interested about the case and seeing the actual truth go request transcripts of the trial I’m pretty sure they will become public soon. I thank the jury for making the right decision.

  15. Always nice to see an Armo put away. He can join his AP friends in the joint.

  16. The snitch is always the shooter

  17. Mickey was a stand up guy. I was fortunate to know him frequenting trader joes. We talked about our daughters, life and working out. His death will forever leave a sour taste of life’s many tumultuous tragedies. Mickey was the many reasons I shopped there or rather looked forward to seeing there. His life was cut too soon, but I hope these words find his friends and family comforting outside of the arguments and judgements posted on here. My condolences to everyone that was lucky to know him, work with him or simply share many chats with!

  18. Justicewasserved

    I just had in n out burger I wonder how their Bologna and stale bread sandwich these scum bags had for dinner tasted? Uhhhh who cares, these 3 rejects got off easy, at least their families can see them still. The victims daughter or family can only visit mickeys grave site. I commend the Detectives and the witnesses who went out of their way to make sure justice was served. And to the lurking “friends and families” of the 3 murderers, remember they made their own bed, now they must sleep in it… For 40 plus years…F.T.P

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