LOS ANGELES (CBS) — Authorities say they know who murdered a Valley Village bride-to-be, then set her house on fire.

LAPD officials and City Councilman Paul Krekorian named 34-year-old transient Omar Armando Loera in the murder of 34-year-old Cheree Ozmanhodzic, who was found July 24 after firefighters put out a fire that had been started in her house. Her fiancé, Adam Culvey, had just chased off a man and returned to see the house on fire.

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Loera, a parolee who also goes by Arturo Benitez and Taz, has black hair and brown eyes, is 5-foot-9 and is 179 pounds. He has tattoos of Aztec women on both shoulders.

KNX 1070’s John Brooks Reports: $50K Reward Out For Suspect

Upon hearing the date of his birthday at the news conference, Ozmanhodzic’s mother broke into tears and sobbed that Loera’s birthday was the same day as Ozmanhodzic’s.

The fire was started in Ozmanhodzic’s room, according to authorities, but her official cause of death was not announced.

If you have any information please contact the North Hollywood Police Department at (818) 623-4016.

(©2010 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

Comments (42)
  1. merrieway says:

    So sad…blessings to Cheree’s family and loved ones.

  2. crystal says:

    Is that a human or a drunken wildebeast?

    God Bless Arizona for fighting to keep scumbags like this out of our country.

    If we didn’t keep releasing these parasites, and importing more of them, scores of innocent victims would still be alive today.

    1. Yvette says:

      Where in the article does it say that he’s an illegal immigrant? Yes he is a monster for killing this poor woman but it is not just people with Latino names that are murderers!

      1. Anonymous says:

        Crystal, he is an American citizen born in Riverside CA. We need to focus on the real issue which is to find this cold blooded murderer. Your neighborhood is not safe!

        We ask for the publics help. If you have any information on the whereabouts of Omar Loera, please call North Hollywood police detectives.

      2. Lynn says:

        Parolee Lost by System Sought in Killing of Bride-to-Be
        Updated: 43 minutes ago
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        Tori Richards

        Tori Richards Contributor
        AOL News
        LOS ANGELES (Sept. 20) — A twice-deported ex-convict never showed up for a meeting with his parole officer yet wasn’t reported missing for a month. Now Omar Armando Loera is wanted in connection with the stabbing death here of a woman on the day she had been shopping for her wedding dress.

    2. DOC says:

      More for homegrown predators!! Me thinks your BIGOTRY is showing?

  3. David says:

    Please God, bless Cheree.

  4. Amber says:

    If you have any information on this scumbag, please contact the North Hollywood Homicide Detectives at (818) 623-4075.

    1. Alexandra says:

      I know her aunt and they would greatly appreciate it if this was passes on to people in Cheree’s neighborhood. Let’s find him and give her family the peace of mind they need.

  5. D says:

    He’ll be caught I’m sure, I’ll be praying on it.

  6. Jasper Bedford Bodine says:

    Well I believe that it is safe to say that things are not looking good for promoters of amnesty or other rights for illegal immigrants. Sheriff Joe warned us.

  7. Nikki says:

    it doesn’t say illegal immigrant anywhere..what his race is, isn’t the issue..he is scum. Wonderful news they have an ID..now catch him. Well wishes to her family and friends…signed a mexican that cares

  8. maya says:

    You are so right Yvette, however, sadly, our latino communities are adversely affected by a dis-proportionately high crime rate. Those of us who are in the U.S. legally pay the price for those who have no stake in the future of Hispanic American culture. Here are a few articles you might take a look at. Granted, one out of the ten I’ve forwarded to you here is from a very conservative site. But the statistics are just adding fuel to an already growing discontent. We need to do our best to promote legal immigration policies, as those who want to become citizens legally are showing that they have an interest in our future, and aren’t here to exploit their anonymity. Why continue to defend

  9. maya says:

    (oops… submitted too soon)….defend those who are giving us all a bad name. Then maybe we can start to see a decrease in those types of comments!

    God Bless Cheree and her family. I pray for a speedy apprehension of this suspect, so that they can start to get some kind of feeling of justice, although closure in a situation like this seems so hard to imagine.

  10. snuffyduck says:

    He was NOT born in Riverside. He has been deported TWICE from this country and has a list of violent felonies. He never should have been released from prison and we need to close the borders!

  11. Tracy says:

    Here is an article about this scum showing he IS an illegal!

    UPDATE: The man now suspected of killing a woman in Valley Village in North Hollywood has been deported twice and is in the US illegally.

    Omar Loera, 34, was in federal immigration custody last March and -could- have been deported, according to local and federal law enforcement sources, but instead was released on to the streets.

  12. CeCe says:

    How is this guy out of prison if he is a five time felon? What happened to the 3 strikes law? This guy should have been locked up for life and yet he was let out to inflict pain on someone else’s family. To add insult, he shared a birthday with the person he slaughtered. He should he found and hung.

  13. Alicia Di Paolo says:

    Excuse me Kev….I am Latina, my family and even my ex husband are Latinos…and for your information we are not scum bags, criminals or illigal aliens. So next time, before you open your mouth and spew your garbage….THINK!!!!

  14. cecelie says:

    To those of you tha think this horrible tragedy to his being Mexican/illegal …….and our immigration problems, may I remind you that Timothy McVeigh WAS a citizen and WAS white as I am. Always remember there is good and bad in everyones race and cultures.

    1. Kathy says:

      @ Cecelie: The point people are trying to make is that if the ILLEGAL Immigrant was not in California ILLEGALLY, then he would not have been able to savagely murder an innocent woman. No one said anything about a Mexican…. they are referring to an ILLEGAL immigrant!! DEPORT THE CRIMINALS ON THEIR FIRST OFFENSE AND SECURE OUR BORDERS!!!!!

  15. concerned american says:

    latinos are giving themselves a bad rap by there barbaric and uncivilized actions. look up the crime statistics in california and los angeles mostly latino. that speaks volumes for the culture. this illegal immigrant isnt helping make the case for latinos any better

  16. RT says:

    Maybe CBS should update their site, this is on other news wires…

    UPDATE: The man now suspected of killing a woman in Valley Village in North Hollywood has been deported twice and is in the US illegally.

    Omar Loera, 34, was in federal immigration custody last March and -could- have been deported, according to local and federal law enforcement sources, but instead was released on to the streets.

    Loera’s criminal record includes federal convictions for drug smuggling, according to court records reviewed by KFI NEWS.

  17. the real world! says:

    I am Hispanic, born right here in California. I am 5th generation in America. Illegal aliens are the biggest reason we are all hurting. We fire teachers, cut pay for cops, nurses, etc and yet we give money to anchor babies and their illegal parents. I’m tired of seeing them hanging outside of home depot! They’re criminals! Get them out of my country! Then we’ll all be better off!

    1. Kathy says:

      Vote Wisely in November!! Be sure to check the DEPORTATION box!!! I want them out too!!

  18. Anonymous says:

    This disgusts me. This monster had no right to be roaming the streets of this state or country. He has extinguished the young life of this woman and destroyed the lives of her family and deserves a just sentence. I believe in an eye for an eye is appropriate for this animal.

    For those in doubt, he IS an illegal alien. The reports today indicate he was deported twice and found his way back in each time. He completed roughly 23 months of a three year sentence and by all indications, he has multiple strikes.

    And, yet, our illustrious state Dept. of Corrections paroled him early and somehow, somewhere, the immigration hold that was apparently on him, was either ignored or overlooked by state and federal authorities. Keep in mind that this is the same corrections department that paroled Charles Garrido and then completely failed to catch the fact that he was holding poor Casey Duggard as a hostage for 18 years and even fathered her children and, more critically, failed to catch it during their parole visits. Yes folks, these are the fools that our tax dollars are paying to run our state prisons, our justice system and the federal government and immigration authorities.

    I am a Latino and a proud American citizen. I don’t care what your race or national origin. If you are trash, you are trash. Period. Say what you want to say about Latino crime, immigration and other issues. Nothing like that offends me because, unfortunately, it is true. It is what it is and we should not try to sugar coat it. There is a direct correlation between our non-existent immigration policy, crime and the continuing decline of our society. Other Latinos that have posted to this comment blog should not be offended and if you are, you need to grow a thicker skin and understand your reality.

    So, ask yourselves, is this just the fault of this predator or can we legitimately fault our ridiculously incompetent state and federal government and politicians that do not have the testicular fortitude to do what is right and instead do what is politically expedient. In my humble opinion, they are equally as or, more guilty than the pig that killed this woman.

    The only reason this country and this state have faltered is because we refuse to accept this reality. We all know it is true and yet, we just have difficulty admitting it and then doing something positive to change it.

    Think about it.

  19. joe says:

    the systems is a joke the electric chair should be working monthly with this type of criminals so we have more room in prison for other crimes

  20. Michelle Greening says:

    The word Illegal is not meant as a means to determine that persons nationality…but is a means to determine that persons intentions. People who chose to conduct themselves in an illegal manner, usually have no respect for, or abide by law.

  21. Brandon says:

    This article isn’t about illegal immigration or someone’s status in this country. It is about the d-bag who murdered Cheree. You people need to show some respect and knock this political crap out. Most of you are way off topic. Grow up. Hopefully they catch this son of a bitc@ sooner than later.

  22. rjsmitty says:

    He was deported twice and then arrested again ,but because of L.A.’s system of turning a blind eye to these illegals they let him go onto L.A.’s streets where he was just looking for some work and came upon this lonley girl and he quickly raped he and set her house on fire. Dont you just love LA

    1. anonymous says:


      Where did you get your information that she was raped? Are you reporting your own speculation?

      The task at hand is to find this man that murdered and set on fire Cheree. Her family and friends deserve justice. The focus needs to remain on finding him!!

      1. rjsmitty says:

        Speculation is when you said he was born in Riverside LOL. To find the truth you must do the foot work lazy! We need to stop these illegals before someone else is killed.

  23. rjsmitty says:

    illegal aliens have killed too many people here in America and they were all 100% preventable . Thanks L.A. for your polices that have been killing and will continue killing !

  24. rjsmitty says:

    Unlike you i do not get the facts from cbs news which is a joke like your statment he was born in Riverside . DNA was found on her body if you need to know more get off of cbs news and find the truth.

  25. Scott Egebjerg says:

    People need to do some reading before they respond and make comments.
    If this guy was a US Citizen, how can he be deported??
    Hey Brandon, this isn’t political, it’s the pure facts. If this illegal immigrant had been deported like he should have been, Cheree would not have been killed by him. The guy had prior arrests and convictions and been deported twice. Whoever the person or people responsible for this guy to be on the streets and being able to do what he did to Cheree, should be held accountable for her death. How many times does this have to happen before those in the corrections department are held accountable for people being killed by those who should have never been let out.

  26. Steve says:

    Why is the t.v. Media not reporting this guy was deported twice and is an illegal immigrant? Are we so “pc” that we can’t even report the facts! This afternoons report would not even state what the tattoos on his arms are…Aztec women. These items where pointed out by investigators on news radio as facts.

  27. The Old Chip says:

    It must be a nightmare; how else can you explain that the news is reporting Omar Loera, a twice previously deported criminal, now wanted for the hideous murder of a soon to be bride and setting fire to her house to cover up the crime. How screwed up can it be that it turns out Omar Loera was lying about being an illegal for his prior deportations because he knew that he would get better treatment as an illegal alien than a citizen.

  28. Whitey Whiteman says:

    Get rid of the Meh-He-Kins

  29. Whitey Whiteman says:

    Mexicans are like rats..We need to get rid of them

  30. Anonymous in Riverside says:

    My friends and i went to high school with her and her brother. Even though we didn’t know her personally in school Cheree is still a human being who’s life was cut way too short. Regardless of race or national origin, this guy needs to be caught and made to pay for his crimes.

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