California Police Investigate Slaying of Utah Woman

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) -- California authorities are investigating the shooting death last week of a 21-year-old Utah woman.

Lee Danae Laursen of Payson was shot Friday in an upper-middle-income residential neighborhood in Fairfield, near San Francisco.

Laursen, who sometimes went by her middle name or the name "Alana," was shot in the back and in the back of her head, Fairfield police Sgt. Dan Pilcher said.

"It doesn't look like there's really any ties to our city at all," Pilcher told The Salt Lake Tribune. "That's why we're pretty baffled why this happened in our city."

He said Laursen's father told police his daughter met a northern California man at a club in Salt Lake City, and followed him to that area. That man, who is not from Fairfield, is in a Las Vegas jail facing an unrelated murder charge, Pilcher said.

The shooting happened about 9:30 p.m. Friday. Neighbors reported hearing four or five gunshots, and a jogger saw a dark sport utility vehicle drive away.

Pilcher said the jogger ran to the area where he heard the shots and found Laursen in a gutter in front of an unoccupied home.

"We've got some definite leads and we're looking at some specific people," Pilcher said.

(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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