Domestic Violence Turns Deadly

November 7, 2001

Northridge: On November 7, 2001, at 12:30 p.m., Devonshire Area patrol officers and Los Angeles Fire Department Paramedics responded to a radio call regarding the victim of an assault inside an apartment located at 8661 Wilbur Avenue. Upon their arrival they were advised by neighbors the lifeless body of a female Hispanic was observed inside apartment #213. Emergency personnel entered the unsecured location and observed the decedent lying on the floor. The victim was pronounced dead at the scene and appeared to have been the victim of foul play. Three unharmed children were located within the apartment and were placed in temporary protective custody.
Information was developed by responding officers, which led to the detention of the victim’s common-law husband, at a nearby family owned business. Further investigation and unspecified physical evidence led to his suspected involvement in the victim’s demise and he was detained, and subsequently arrested for murder. He was transported to Northridge Hospital for treatment of an unrelated medical condition and booked at Devonshire Station.
The victim has been identified as Dania Mezen, 20-years-old, and the suspect is believed to be known by the name of David Vasquez, 34-years-old. The victim and the suspect resided in apartment #213 with their three children. The motive for the crime appears to be domestic violence related. The type of weapon responsible for her demise is possibly a small caliber firearm, however this aspect of the case remains under investigation.
Anyone with information should contact Devonshire Homicide Unit Detective Mike Oppelt at 818-756-8291 and during off-hours contact the Department Command Post at 213-485-2504.
This press release was prepared by Public Information officer Jason Lee, Media Relations Section, 213-485-3586.