|For Immediate Release
Case # 07HF1539
|Susan Kang Schroeder
Chief of Staff
MAN CONVICTED OF MURDERING
NEWPORT BEACH LIQUOR STORE CLERK TO
STEAL A PORNOGRAPHIC MAGAZINE
*At the time of the murder, the defendant was out of custody on bail for two unrelated felony cases
SANTA ANA – A Newport Beach man was convicted today of murdering a liquor store owner who confronted him about stealing a pornographic magazine. At the time of the murder, the defendant was out of custody on two other unrelated felony cases for domestic violence and residential burglary. Weston Scott Kruger, 31, was found guilty by a jury of one felony count of murder. The defendant also faces two crime-bail-crime sentencing enhancements. The term “crime-bail-crime” indicates that the defendant committed the murder while out of custody on bail for two separate offenses. Kruger faces a sentence of 25 years to life in state prison at his sentencing June 18, 2010, at 9:00 a.m. in Department C-29, Central Justice Center, Santa Ana.
In addition to the murder case, Kruger has two other felony cases pending against him (see details below).
Homicide Case (Case # 07HF1539)
On the afternoon of July 28, 2007, Kruger entered Sportsman Liquor Store at 2615 Newport Boulevard in Newport Beach. He hid a pornographic magazine under his shirt with the intention of stealing it before approaching the counter to purchase a pack of cigarettes. While Kruger was standing at the counter he was confronted by the clerk, store owner Hao Huynh, who could see the stolen magazine that the defendant was attempting to conceal.
Kruger walked out of the liquor store as Huynh followed him out and refused to let go of the magazine as the victim attempted to get it back. Kruger turned to the victim and violently shoved him, causing Huynh to fly through the air and fall to the ground, landing on the back of his head. The defendant picked up the magazine and briefly stood over the victim with a clenched fist to make sure that Huynh did not get up, and then fled the scene with the stolen pornographic magazine.
Huynh was transported to the hospital, where he died the following day due to traumatic injuries to his brain. The victim had owned and worked at Sportsman Liquor Store with his wife since 1992. The victim’s wife was in the store at the time of the murder.