BREAKING: Arrest Made in Case of Missing Placentia Woman
UPDATE, 8:45 P.M.: OCDA ISSUED A PRESS RELEASE ON THE CASE TODAY. SEE BOTTOM OF POST FOR DETAILS.
McAmis is currently being held at the Santa Ana central jail complex in lieu of $1 million bail and is expected to be taken to the courthouse in Whittier today for arraignment. McAmis originally told police that, following an evening trip to San Diego with friends on Feb. 17, 2001 he dropped the 20-year-old Ekelund off at the corner of Valparaiso and Rose drives, near her home. She hasn't been seen since.
According to Loomis, following his arrest Wednesday, McAmis admitted to taking Ekelund to his Whittier apartment that evening where, he said, a struggle ensued and she was killed. Loomis added that investigators believe Ekelund's body was buried in an isolated area in Los Angeles County where an exhumation is planned for Wednesday.
When asked if his office had been contacted, Chief Craig Harvey of the Los Angeles Department of Coroner said, "We've been talking with the Orange County District Attorney's office, and they're going to be letting us know if anything is going to happen... We are here to help them with whatever they need."
UPDATE 8:45 p.m., 10-29: Today's OC District Attorney's Office press release on the case is below.
MAN TO BE ARRAIGNED FOR SPECIAL CIRCUMSTANCES 2001 COLD CASE MURDER OF 20-YEAR-OLD FEMALE FRIEND
LOS ANGELES - A man will be arraigned for the special circumstances cold case murder of 20-year-old female friend during the attempted rape of the victim at his Los Angeles apartment. Christopher Michael McAmis, 31, Fullerton, is charged by the Los Angeles District Attorney's Office (LADA) with one felony count of special circumstances murder for committing murder during the commission of a rape. He faces a minimum sentence of life without the possibility of parole. The defendant is being held on $1 million bail and is scheduled to be arraigned on Nov. 30, 2010, at 8:30 a.m. in Department 1 of the Los Angeles Superior Court in Whittier.
The case was jointly investigated by the Orange County District Attorney's Office (OCDA) Task Force Review aimed at catching Killers, Rapist, and Sexual offenders Unit (TracKRS) and Placentia Police Department (PPD). The Los Angeles District Attorney's Office (LADA) filed murder charges today due to the fact that the murder was committed in Los Angeles County.
Beginning in 2000, McAmis is accused of befriending 20-year-old Lynsie Leigh Ekelund, 20, Placentia. In the early evening of Feb. 16, 2001, McAmis is accused of picking up Ekelund at her family's home in Placentia, picking up two additional female friends, and driving to a San Diego nightclub.
Early in the morning on Feb. 17, 2001, McAmis is accused of taking Ekelund's friends home, first dropping one off in Carona and the second in Anaheim. McAmis is accused of taking Ekelund back to his apartment and attempting to rape her. McAmis is then accused of murdering her and disposing of her body.
On Feb. 19, 2001, Ekelund's mother reported the victim missing to PPD. Police investigated the case but it went cold. In 2008, the OCDA TracKRS Unit was asked by PPD to review the case and began jointly investigating the case with PPD.
Upon further investigation, McAmis was arrested on Oct. 27, 2010, by PPD officers at his Fullerton home.
The investigation is ongoing. Anyone with additional information is encouraged to contact Supervising District Attorney Investigator Helen Moreno at (714) 347-8492 or Placentia Police Homicide Detective Brice Angel at (714) 993-8187.
Los Angeles Deputy-in-Charge Jennifer McDonald of the Whittier office filed the case. The assigned prosecutor is Deputy District Attorney Michael Michelena.
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