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Transient man pleads no contest in fatal beating outside restaurant

A homeless man pleaded no contest Sept. 29 to voluntary manslaughter in the death of another transient outside a fast food restaurant on the border of Chinatown and downtown Los Angeles last year, according to the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office. 

Derek Miller entered his plea and is expected to be sentenced to 11 years in state prison on Oct. 18. Charles Allender, another suspect, is scheduled to stand trial for murder and assault. 

On Feb. 7, 2015, Derrick Hamilton, 45, was attacked in the parking lot of a fast food restaurant, prosecutors said. Police said Hamilton, a transient, was panhandling outside the Burger King in the 700 block of West Cesar E. Chavez Avenue when he got into a fight with two other people.

The two men, who had a dog with them, kicked and punched Hamilton until he fell, then continued to assault him, according to police. The dog also attacked Hamilton.

The fight lasted about four minutes and was captured on video. Hamilton was taken to a hospital where he was pronounced dead, according to coroner records. 

If convicted as charged, Allender faces a maximum sentence of 32 years to life in state prison. 

Contact the Homicide Report. Follow @jeromercampbell and @latimeshomicide on Twitter.

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