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Hearing scheduled for man accused of killing Burbank offiicer, injuring another

He is accused of shooting death of Burbank officer, wounding of another.

August 26, 2011|By Maria Hsin,
  • Dave Garcia enters a Pasadena courtroom for his arraignment Tuesday, Dec. 23, 2003. (File photo)
Dave Garcia enters a Pasadena courtroom for his arraignment…

After years of postponements, a pre-trial hearing is scheduled next month for David Garcia, the man accused of killing Burbank Police Officer Matthew Pavelka in November 2003.

A routine stop outside the Ramada Inn that year escalated into an exchange of gunfire that left a veteran officer severely wounded and Pavelka dead after only 10 months on the force.

Garcia, 27, appeared in court in downtown Los Angeles briefly Tuesday morning, where a pre-trial hearing was scheduled for Sept. 23, official said. He is being held without bail, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.

In 2004, Garcia was indicted on one count each of murder, attempted murder, possession of a controlled substance for transportation and five counts for weapons violations.

Garcia, who was 19 at the time of his arrest, alleged officer misconduct during the arrest. The FBI was looking into officer misconduct within the Burbank Police Department at about the same time.


Michael Brennan, a professor at the USC Gould School of Law, has said the defense may argue that there was a connection between the FBI investigation and the Garcia case.

The trial has been postponed by scheduling conflicts and medical issues, and the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office has said it was unclear how the FBI probe would affect the case.

Pavelka, 26, was the son of a Los Angeles Police Department detective.

Burbank police had not lost one of their own in a shooting since 1920.

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