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Bell Gardens man strangles girlfriend, hangs self

10/10/2011, 5 p.m.

BELL GARDENS, Calif.--A Bell Gardens man apparently strangled his girlfriend and then hanged himself at their residence, authorities said today.

The bodies were found in the 5900 block of Quinn Street at 6:43 p.m. Monday, said Los Angeles County sheriff's Deputy Mark Pope, adding that the man is regarded as a suspect and the woman as his victim.

The woman was identified today as Christine Medina, 25, said coroner's Assistant Chief Ed Winter. The name of the dead man, who was in his 30s, was withheld, pending family notification.

Investigators believe the man strangled his girlfriend and then hanged himself at the home they shared, Winter said.

Bell Gardens police officers and firefighters entered the home through a screen window in response to a call from a concerned family member, sheriff's homicide Detective David Gunner, one of the investigators on the case, told camera crews at the scene.

Los Angeles County coroner's investigators were probing the two deaths, along with detectives from the Sheriff's Department, which routinely assists small police departments with homicide investigations.

Anyone with information on the deaths was urged to contact sheriff's homicide detectives at (323) 890-5500.