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Suspects In Fatal Santa Ana Nightclub Beating Appear In Court

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textalerts180 Suspects In Fatal Santa Ana Nightclub Beating Appear In Court

SANTA ANA (CBSLA.com) — Two suspects charged in the fatal beating of a 23-year-old Westminster woman outside an Orange County nightclub were in court Monday for a preliminary hearing.

Vanesa Tapia Zavala, 25, and 27-year-old Candace Marie Brito were arrested and charged in the death of Annie Hung “Kim” Pham, who was attacked shortly after midnight on Jan. 18 outside The Crosby Bar and Nightclub.

Pham died of complications from blunt force trauma to the head a few days after the incident, according to an autopsy report.

Both suspects, who were being held on $1 million bail, pleaded not guilty to the attack.

KCAL9’s Andrea Fujii reports Detective Patricia Navarro admitted in court Monday she wore a wire and went undercover in a jail cell with Zavala for about an hour, despite Zavala already invoking her right to an attorney.

The hearing is scheduled to resume Tuesday morning, when a judge is expected to decide if the undercover detective’s testimony is admissable.

If convicted, Zavala and Brito could each be sentenced to a maximum of 15 years to life in prison.

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