- Associated Press - Friday, January 13, 2017

LOS ANGELES (AP) - Five people have been arrested and are accused of trying to help a man escape capture after he fatally shot a Los Angeles County sheriff’s sergeant in October, the sheriff’s department said Friday.

The suspects were accused of trying to help Trenton Trevon Lovell evade arrest after he shot Sergeant Steve Owen, a 29-year department veteran, who was responding to a burglary report in Lancaster, a desert town north of Los Angeles.

After shooting Owen, Lovell pumped four more bullets into the sergeant’s body as he lay on the ground, authorities said.

Los Angeles County Sheriff Jim McDonnell called Owen’s death a “calculated execution.”

Authorities declined to detail the specific allegations against the five suspects, who were arrested Thursday at or near their homes in Southern California.

The sheriff’s department said only that the arrests happened after detectives developed information that the five had “attempted to help” Lovell evade arrest following the Oct. 6 shooting.

After Owen was shot, Lovell stole the sergeant’s patrol car, rammed another police vehicle and then held two teenagers hostage at knifepoint in a building before he was captured, authorities said.

The suspects were identified Friday as: Lydell Herd, 31; Robert Thomas, 28; Richard Cowley, 24; Larry Johnson, 27; and Deshawn Peterson, 18.

They were in custody and could not be reached Friday for comment. It was not immediately clear if any of the suspects had attorneys who could comment.

Lovell, who was shot by a sheriff’s deputy during the encounter, has pleaded not guilty to a murder charge and is due back in court next month.


Follow Michael Balsamo on Twitter @MikeBalsamo1.

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