A story for every victim

John Lavine, 62 [Updated]

John Lavine, a 62-year-old white man, died Tuesday, July 27, in the 10000 block of South La Cienega Boulevard in Lennox, according to Los Angeles County coroner's records.

[An earlier version of this post, which was based on the initial report by the coroner, listed Lavine as John Doe No. 127.]

A fire was reported at 11:35 a.m. in a commercial building. When firefighters arrived, they found the 50-foot-by-100-foot building engulfed in flames and smoke, said L.A. County Fire Inspector Frederic Stowers.

About 50 firefighters extinguished the blaze in 20 minutes. They found Lavine's body during a second search of the building. Another man was treated at the scene for minor injuries.

Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department arson investigators were trying to determine the cause of the fire.

According to coroner's records, Lavine, of Long Beach, died of multiple gunshot wounds, and his death was ruled a homicide.

[Updated at 3:00 p.m., Aug. 5: The man treated at the scene for his injuries told police they were the result of being hit by a vehicle, according to a sheriff's department news release.

His injuries were inconsistent with his statement, the department said.

During the investigation, it was discovered the man, since identified as David Edward Albert, had been fired one week earlier from the business where Lavine's body was found.

Authorities allege that Albert, a 53-year-old white man, was responsible for the fire and Lavine's subsequent death. He was arrested on suspicion of arson and murder.

Albert is currently being held at the Men's Central Jail in Downtown and is being held in lieu of $2-million bail.

His next court appearance is scheduled for Aug. 24 at the Inglewood Municipal Court.]

— Tony Barboza and Sarah Ardalani

Do you have information to share about the life of John Howard Lavine ? The Homicide Report needs your help. Please fill out this form or e-mail us at homicidereport@latimes.com.

Share a memory or thought about John Howard Lavine

Before you post, here are some answers to frequently asked questions:

Remember, all posts are approved by a Times staffer. Profanity and personal attacks will not be approved.


Four reader comments