An SFPD logo on a police car outside the new Portola Substation on Wednesday, June 27, 2018. (Kevin N. Hume/S.F. Examiner)

Suspect in SF homicide from 1990 turns up decades later in SoCal

Three decades after San Francisco police identified him as the suspect in a fatal shooting outside a soup kitchen in the Mission District, a now elderly man was arrested this week when he encountered authorities in Santa Barbara County.

James Francis Edwards, 70, was believed to have likely fled California when authorities first obtained a warrant for his arrest in the killing of 46-year-old Lamar Vaughn outside the Martin de Porres House of Hospitality on the morning of Nov. 5, 1990.

But Edwards turned up Wednesday when the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office conducted a welfare check on another person at a residence on the 1000 block of Casitas Pass Road in the city of Carpinteria, according to authorities.

Deputies ran a records check on Edwards and learned there was still a warrant out for his arrest more than 30 years later.

“We would like to thank the members of the Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office for their assistance in locating and apprehending Edwards and helping return him to San Francisco where he will be held to answer for the criminal charges,” the San Francisco Police Department said in a statement Friday.

Vaughn’s killing appears to have gone largely unnoticed back in 1990. At the time, the San Francisco Examiner reported only that an arrest warrant was issued for Edwards in the shooting in front of the soup kitchen at 225 Potrero Ave.

Police offered a few more details Friday. They said said an argument between the two men led to the shooting. Vaughn was shot once and later died at San Francisco General Hospital.

Edwards, then 40, was believed to have had multiple aliases. He was wanted for both murder and being a felon in possession of a firearm.

Edwards remains in Santa Barbara County jail as of Friday. He is expected to be transferred to San Francisco County and arraigned on the charges as early as Monday.

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