Police continue search for suspected killer Crimes & Incidents, posted by Editor, Palo Alto Online, on Jul 16, 2008 at 1:00 pm
Palo Alto police are still searching for Otto Emil Koloto, a Gilroy man suspected of shooting a man outside of City Hall in the early morning hours of July 13 during an alleged robbery. The shooting victim, Philip Lacy, 27, of South San Francisco, later died after being removed from life support at Stanford Hospital.
Read the full story here Web Link posted Monday, July 21, 2008, 10:42 AM
Posted by Smile, a member of the Palo Alto High School community, on Jul 16, 2008 at 1:15 pm
Re Send them back's comments, which will probably be edited out, how do people get into our country these days? My Canadian cousin, who is a hard-working engineer, finally got citizenship after some 9 years. Is it easy for just anyone to enter the U.S? Maybe it's citizenship that is difficult?
My mom used to work for Social Security 20 years ago and she was interviewing someone who was going to be sent back to Mexico. She said, "I guess I should cancel your appt. for next week?" and he said, "No, I'll be back."
Posted by Mom, a member of the Duveneck School community, on Jul 16, 2008 at 1:26 pm
Don't blame this town. It's the thugs who are mobile. Maybe he was in the area to pick up some drugs and needed some money too so decided to rob someone. He probably did not realize he was next to the police station. We cannot put a gate around the entire city of Palo Alto, although that would be nice.
It did mention he had a criminal record and I wonder too why he wasn't deported. Perhaps he was and came right back?
Posted by 2nd Ammendment, a resident of the Monroe Park neighborhood, on Jul 16, 2008 at 2:13 pm
Instead of playing the race game, from all sides, why don't we just agree that all U.S. citizens have the indivdual right to bear arms, specifically concealed pistols? The Supreme Court has already decided that we do have an individual right, however, each state has placed restrictions. Most states have now allowed law-abiding citizens to carry concealed pistols, but California is not one of them. It is time.
Who else will protect us, if not ourselves? This murder in Palo Alto occured next to the police station, as did the murder of Herbert Kay a decade ago.
We don't need a scream about race and culture. We need to be armed. It is our right!
Posted by NewResident, a resident of the Professorville neighborhood, on Jul 16, 2008 at 2:29 pm
Wow -I'm a little surprised by the racial under/overtones of the comments posted here. I don't even want to know what "Send them back" is saying -- his online name says it all. Is this the real face of Palo Alto emerging? How deep does this sentiment run?
As a recent "immigrant" from North Carolina (lived there for 10 years), what I saw was social segregation in everything from political advocacy groups to block parties. I was hoping California was going to be different, especially PA. It makes me sad.
Posted by @, a resident of the Duveneck/St. Francis neighborhood, on Jul 16, 2008 at 2:33 pm
Regardless of the ethnicity of this alleged suspect, the fact that there are now murders, stabbings, abductions, and rapes occurring with regularity in Palo Alto is outrageous and unacceptable. The frequencies of these events in Palo Alto do not appear to be nearly as high in Atherton or Menlo Park. [Portion removed by Palo Alto Online staff.]
Posted by Mills High School 99, a resident of another community, on Jul 16, 2008 at 3:01 pm
Its not about race, but I sure as heck hope when we find him, my taxes aren't paying for his time in jail. We all know where he belongs. Send him to go see Phil and give him his chain back. Although Phil is going to a happy place. Another place Koloto does not belong.
Posted by It's Easy, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood, on Jul 16, 2008 at 3:08 pm
Smile: "How do people get into our country these days?" It's easy, just get a visitor's visa and after the time has elapsed for your visit you just stay here. A visitor's visa doesn't make you legal but it does get you into the country of your choice. Many illegals enter the U.S. this way, they just don't go home.
Posted by Resident, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood, on Jul 16, 2008 at 5:35 pm
I was wondering where the $10,000 reward is coming from? Does this money come from a fund somewhere in PA budgets, or is it from the family? Can it be added to by donations?
I sincerely hope the reward does tempt someone who knows this guy to give him up. He obviously has connections here and also in Gilroy and somebody must know his present whereabouts. To anyone out there that does, please help our community by giving the necessary information. You will probably be helping save more lives in the long run.
Posted by joel, a resident of the Charleston Gardens neighborhood, on Jul 16, 2008 at 5:41 pm
The police in EPA, Oakland etc have a real problem getting witnesses of gang crime to testify as the gangs threaten them and the communities call them snitches, it is a terrible ethic and I hope it does not prevail in this matter.
The larger problem is how are we going to keep these gangs out of Palo Alto.
In DC they stop and search cars coming from certain high crime areas,
Posted by bruce k, a resident of the Crescent Park neighborhood, on Jul 16, 2008 at 5:56 pm
I was saddened and shocked to learn that a man was murdered right next to the police station. Having been a resident of Palo Alto since 1970 I have read several stories like this and over time they build up to where I wonder about the safety of our streets in the downtown area at night.
I enjoy walking downtown to shop or to eat or see a movie and now I have to pause to think what are the chances of running into somethintg such as this?
I hate to do it, but I would like to suggest that as in London that Palo Alto consider installing video surveilance cameras on downtown streets to detect and deter actions like this. Doing nothing but giving lip service to undefined unrestrained civil liberties does not aggressively meet and prevent these kinds of things. The world is getting violent and there are actions we can take to stand up to that without losing our basic identities ... I hope.
Posted by Donadoni, a resident of the Crescent Park neighborhood, on Jul 16, 2008 at 6:06 pm
Charlie Manson, Tim McVeigh, Ted Bundy, George W Bush and Dick Cheney are all US citizens so this xenophobic talk about "foreign" criminals is just disgusting racism. Murder is murder and it seems like US citizens are just as capable of it as others.
Posted by bruce k, a resident of the Crescent Park neighborhood, on Jul 16, 2008 at 6:24 pm
the other day I was driving down alma from mountain view and there was a car full of rowdy kids weaving in and out of traffic for miles, all the way to downtown. on the way throwing trash out the window of the car and yelling at people and in general being menacing and driving dangerously and threatening other people's lives.
how and why can this go on over and over and because things like this shooting only happen infrequently and apparently randomly that they are in some way inevitable or acceptable?
to me this is intolerable. i recall the story of a man killed at the train station one year, a woman shot on the sidewalk of alma near university. i was once attacked at a bus stop at stanford shopping center myself. there are many other stories, and I wish that we could see them all and analyze them in order to figure out what to do about this kind of thing.
I don't want to end up hurt or dead on the sidewalk in the town where I live because of hand-wringing and failure of Palo Altans to act sensibly. We have a very rich community that seems to be cutting back on everything in every way in terms of anything public with this kind of thing as the result.
Posted by bruce k, a resident of the Crescent Park neighborhood, on Jul 16, 2008 at 6:55 pm
new resident, of course cameras cannot prevent crime ... nothing can. if there are criminal people at large walking in palo alto who get set of for whatever reason they threaten all of us, all of the time. maybe they do not even do anything, but the reporting of stories like this, and then running into people makes normal people have to be fearful in their own neighborhoods while the criminals can strut and get bolder. i believe statistic show there is less crime in areas where there are video cameras - not 0 crime, just less. when there is a crime there is at least a witness.
If palo alto had "wired" the city with internet it would be a simply matter to put some wireless cameras in sight feeding into a control center in city hall.
the same problem with police everywhere is in palo alto, they cannot be everywhere at once, and they cannot respond in time in a violent attack like this one. i have to say I really get a bit nervous walking downtown at night sometimes and I see some odd looking characters, I would like to see cameras downtown and perhaps on el camino and middlefield.
if this is palo alto, imagine what some other cities and the people who live in them face?
Posted by bruce k, a resident of the Crescent Park neighborhood, on Jul 16, 2008 at 6:58 pm
> PaloAltoans have traditionally made excuses for these criminals out of White Guilt.
I can do without all this kind of baggage from you buddy, I am white and I suffer from no such thing, and to hear your assinine simplistic ridiculous theories of race ruining what should be an important discussion about our city makes me resent you wasting my time.
Posted by Jed Cooper, a resident of the Barron Park neighborhood, on Jul 16, 2008 at 7:00 pm
Palo Alto is moving from Hippies to Thugs in a generation.
So the real question is where are you going to draw the line? When is enough enough? The jails are packed and not a deterrent. None of the guilty are executed (Scott Peterson). So sports fans who is next: your sister, your mother, your brother? Get off your butts and demand real justice. The aforementioned Mr. Peterson would be a good place to start.
I say an execution a day will keep the criminal away.
Posted by coach, a resident of another community, on Jul 16, 2008 at 7:07 pm
This should not be about race or where someone lives. It is about parenting its about values and this guy has none. Obama hit the nail on the head. Where are the parents? Are they teaching right from wrong? How could anyone in their right mind think its okay to take someones life. This suspect has no regard for life. Thats scary... I know Phils family and I knew Phil and he respected people and loved life. R.I.P Phil
Posted by To Joanne, a resident of Menlo Park, on Jul 16, 2008 at 7:24 pm
But the KILLER doesn't live in EPA, he lives in Gilroy. So who cares where his relatives live, unless it leads to him. I have relatives in Ireland; doesn't make them members of the IRA. I have relatives in Spain, doesn't make any of us fascists. Get a clue - thugs live in every city - incl Palo Alto. In Palo Alto, they hide behind higher incomes, better paid attorneys, fanicer job titles & behind the wheels of nicer cars than in some other areas. When I lived in Palo Alto, there was a gang murder on my street - yes, a gang murder.
I canNOT believe the ignorance & moronic self-entitled attitudes on this bored - it's actually pretty funny. It took HOW many posts til someone mentioned AMERICAN Samoa? Is the suspect Tongan or Samoan? Your county will pay a pretty penny if the suspect is caught & the case goes to trial. Then, we all pay when he goes to the state pen. No community is immune from violent crimes, tragedies, abuse, neglect & addiction.
Posted by To Bruce, a resident of Menlo Park, on Jul 16, 2008 at 7:31 pm
Hi Bruce - I sympathize. I recall the stabbing death of a young man at Univ & Chaucer late one night. At Paly High, I knew a number of kids that committed suicide. 20 years later, there are still pretty frequent suicides of PA kids.
Years ago, a police officer friend of mine said the unspoken rule of thumb was "white kids kill themselves, kids of color kill each other." He meant it more about economic strata, but it's still somewhat true in this area. A girl at MA, a Pacific Islander, committed suicide recently - I think she was a ganag member if I recall correctly. But it stands out as unusual, vs. the number in her deomgraphic that are murdered.
I steer clear of downtown PA on weekends & have for sometime. Even w/out the parking problems, I don't want to be where there have to be so many cops - unless I'm in New Orleans!
Posted by bruce k, a resident of the Crescent Park neighborhood, on Jul 16, 2008 at 7:31 pm
I find the number of posts here suggesting some kind of adoption of Asian social customs of justice and politics to the US, specifically in Palo Alto in response to the killing of 27 year old Phillip Lacy to be absurd in the extreme. Certainly as bad trying to make this about he parents of the perpetrator at this point.
Why is it that so many Asians have come to the West, or seek refuge here? Why is it that until recently most of these societies were not much better than gang warfare themselves? I hope reasonable people will ignore these trolling comments about the death penalty or putting police decoys on every street every night and the bad jokes they are.
I hope Palo Altans will stick to the point of how to deter and prosecute these kinds of people who would bring senseless violence into our city and offer up more concrete and sensible ideas and above all stick to the point.
Posted by bruce k, a resident of the Crescent Park neighborhood, on Jul 16, 2008 at 7:36 pm
Menlo Park resident. Thanks for your comments. I live (barely) within walking distance of downtown, barely. I enjoy walking to the bookstore, movies or dinner. I have run into some very odd people and try to avoid them, but this kind of thing is going to happen randomly. I honestly think cameras would help. Nothing will solve this, but for the most bang for our taxpayer buck I would vote cameras. I do not wnat to pay to have people tried for execution, or pay police to dress up and pretend to be drunk unaware potential victims.
I do not know how to look at this racially, other than in terms of class and frustration and anger and I think that cannot be solved or even understood anytime in our lifetimes.
Posted by To Bruce Again, a resident of Menlo Park, on Jul 16, 2008 at 7:37 pm
I've wondered, when reading about the weekend violence in downtown PA, if residents can take the crime stats & address council members, pressuring them to do something more. I don't know what the answers are, and the cops can't be everywhere, all the time. It does seem that whenever there's alcohol, young people & wealth - or poverty - violence is rife.
People also need to police themselves, of course, but apparently, they need more help w/this than they give themselves ;) Seriously, though, ever since Dr. Kay was killed, I've looked at downtown differently. Predators look for prey - everywhere. As a woman, I'm aware of my vulnerabilities. I take my dogs in the car quite often - and always at night. If I have to be at an ATM at night, one of them is w/me. After being stalked, in college, by a kid who'd also gone to Paly, I became even more aware of the lengths people who prey on others are willing to go to.
Posted by To Bruce Once Again, a resident of Menlo Park, on Jul 16, 2008 at 7:43 pm
I think what's behind a lot of the racial issues are also cultural differences - whether machismo, loyalty, group behavior is idolized, for example. I have seen way more than my share of violence than most middle class women - blessedly, none in my home growing up or in my relationships. We often feel safe in our peninsula cocoons, but it's relative. I'm not paranoid, just more aware than a lot of people, based on what I've witnessed & experienced.
I recall one of PA's crime stats last year: I believe crimes were committed in higher number by Latino, then white, individuals. African American was further down on the list than in the past. Police said this was probably due to the meth addictions on the rise. Heck, a childcare provider was carjacked, at gunpoint, in broad daylight, in a PA church parking lot just 2 yrs. ago. 12 yrs ago, a rapist was preying on women in midtown. These are just crimes I'm aware of, so what I'm typing is based on memory, not direct stats.
Not being a victim isn't easy - I'm sure Phil Lacy never considered himself a victim, RIP.
Posted by Mills Classmate 99, a resident of another community, on Jul 16, 2008 at 7:59 pm
Bruce and others its about phil. Dont you have something better to do. maybe you should be volunteering your time in Palo Alto instead of coming up with these ideas via a comment page on the Palo Alto Online website. Go down to the city hall and address these issues in person. Sorry Phil RIP.
Posted by To Mills Classmate, a resident of Menlo Park, on Jul 16, 2008 at 8:03 pm
I'm not interested in doing any work in Palo Alto - dealing w/the city is just ridiculous. I do plenty of volunteer work. This forum is here for discussion, and while we may not have known Phil, his tragic murder has affected many of us, albeit not in a personal way. Bruce & I have both been crime victims - yes, in Palo Alto, so perhaps we relate to this horrid incident more than many. Just as you decided to post - expressing your thoughts & feelings, so are we - it's what the forum is for. Respectfully - perhaps not reading posts which don't soothe you is a better way to go.
Posted by Joe, a resident of the Professorville neighborhood, on Jul 16, 2008 at 8:06 pm
The technique that NYC Mayor Ed Koch effectively used was "scoop up then drop off". Perhaps this approach could be considered for the criminal figures in adjoining communities which are preying on Palo Alto.
Posted by bruce k, a resident of the Crescent Park neighborhood, on Jul 16, 2008 at 8:06 pm
To: Mills Classmate 99, a resident of another community
Wow, from another community and you come here to criticise me for not having anything better to do, twice? If something we did prevented someone from being hurt a few minutes and some words is small price to pay. Also nice to hear what other people think in my community. Sorry you seem to resent my comments so much you have to attack me.
Posted by To Bruce, a resident of Menlo Park, on Jul 16, 2008 at 8:08 pm
You raisesmart, basic, rational points. What we consider to be random acts of violence, such as Phil's murder, have a horiffic domino effect on so many connected to him.
Perhaps getting a group of citizens together & asking for a meeting w/the police can shed some light on what more may be possible to do. Often, citizens working w/cops can make a difference, more than just 1 or the othe group. PA gets terribly bogged down in rhetoric, politics, positionisng, egotistical issues - it's just ridiculous. On the other hand, requesting a meeting & relevant information in a concise manner, and then seeing what action can be taken together is a good starting plan. I've done this in small towns & it's helped.
Posted by bruce k, a resident of the Crescent Park neighborhood, on Jul 16, 2008 at 8:11 pm
Joe, can you be specific when you talk about criminals preying on palo altans? Does this fit the current subject, or is it part of a wider subject you are addressing. I wonder if Palo Alto is big enough with resources enough to do some scoop and drop type thing. About 15 years ago I think the surrounding cities donated police force to help East Palo Alto and that was successful.
Relative to Phil's death these things though infrequent, are they the biggest threat we face in PA. I know they have the crime blotter sometimes in the Palo Alto Times, but it would be nice if they broke some of this stuff into yearly/monthly stats so residents actually knew.
Posted by Barb - Move To EPA!, a resident of East Palo Alto, on Jul 16, 2008 at 8:21 pm
Barb - EPA has had its share of cops who match the thugs in behavior and toughness. But there needs to be many more of them to make a bigger impact, if your plan were ever to be followed.
It's classic -anywhere where people, liquor and the resulting fun are to be had, there are predators. Even PAPD knows that - they are somewhat restrained in what they can do, both by law and by their dept's rules and regs.
EPA after its formation was the wild, wild west in many ways. I saw so many things between the cops and citizens, that I still have a hard time believing. There was a cop selling arms from his car at one point...don't get me started!
Posted by Joe, a resident of the Professorville neighborhood, on Jul 16, 2008 at 8:23 pm
To Bruce K
Thanks for your thoughts. Indeed, our thinking is aligned that the larger issue at hand is that the eastward adjoining community has the top crime rate of any city in the area. As it is clearly evident that the leadership of the community in discussion has been completely unable to manage their own problems. It is time to seek other avenues such as your suggestion to help them solve their crime rate before they again have the highest murder rate in the country and have it continue to spill into Palo Alto.
Posted by To Paul H, a resident of Menlo Park, on Jul 16, 2008 at 8:27 pm
You left out: Mt View, MP, Redwood City as surrounding areas. MP is filled with Pacific Islanders. Still - surrounding community. The killer is a citizen of YOUR county, and killed in YOUR city. He may have an affiliation w/Tongan Crips, some other gang, or no gang at all. But be aware: Tongan Crips are in Mt. View and SJ, not just EPA, east MP.
Posted by To Joe, a resident of Menlo Park, on Jul 16, 2008 at 8:36 pm
Actually, EPA's murder rate is rather low this year. In the past few years, only 3 true innocent murder victims come to mind: the gentleman who owned Doctor's, a vending machine or newspaper delivery guy who was murdered across from DLA Piper, in a laundramat, and Officer Richard May. The others, if I recall correctly, are majority gang-related.
Part of the "spillage" is your city's big desire for high revenue - bars and restaurants make big money, big tax dollars. Downtown PA is a tourist destination, just as parts of NYC are. Your city attracts its own spillage - just as EPA attracts its own type of crime, so you all need to own that - as citizens. I don't mean you're responsible. What I mean is that you've chosen to live in a self-aggrandizing, self-important town which has, among many wonderful amenities, a lot of late night drinking and carousing in a small area. Since people come from all over for that - just as they do SF, Burlingame, SJ - not all of those people are good. This isn't an EPA vs. PA problem. This is a prey vs. predator problem. Look at your own community's predators over the last, say, 50 years. Of course, not all that info is public, such as incest and domestic violence. But crimes outside the family home which are violent - you can get stats on that, but not sure how to tell where the perps are from.
PA needs to wuit living in its own bubble - just because people are educated, opinionated and self-important doesn't mean they're invincible.
Posted by To Barb, a resident of Menlo Park, on Jul 16, 2008 at 8:41 pm
You don't care how gang violence is stopped just so it's not in your community? Are you high? - Just kidding - 60s ref. Seriously, you need to care how it's stopped - part of being a citizen involves protection of our rights. You need to be concerned where the violence is happening if you ever venture out of the PA bubble. Menlo, Atherton, Redwood City, SF, Fremont, SJ, Santa Clara - if you go to, or through, any of these cities, there is violent crime there. Always has been, always will be.
I don't mean jump on a bandwagon and try to figure it all out - but just be super aware, super careful.
There have been gangs in PA - from other areas as well as from within - hanging out in parks and local places for years. You probably don't really notice them.
Posted by To Menlo Park Resident, a resident of the Professorville neighborhood, on Jul 16, 2008 at 8:47 pm
Please read attached news excerpt. If you believe that these crime rates are an improvement and not an issue, do you play "Grand Theft Auto" in your free time?
"The East Palo Alto Police Department launched a ďcrime emergencyĒ program on April 11 in response to a surge in predominantly gang-related violent crime in the city.
The first quarter of 2008 saw 48 assaults with firearms, up from 35 in the same period last year, and seven people were shot in the first 10 days of April, according to a Police Department press release."
Posted by Seriously?, a resident of the Palo Alto Hills neighborhood, on Jul 16, 2008 at 9:17 pm
wow, it's unbelievable reading some of the ignorance on this thread. first off, going back to julie who immediately asked why he wasn't deported...where, sweetheart, in the article was it mentioned that he was an immigrant to this country? because of his dark complexion? because of his ethnic name? because he isn't like your typical white male who drives a prius. you go on to talk about "a rational approach to profiling suspects" - well think about this...what are the chances of a white male being a pedophile? how many child molesters end up looking like your average joe next door? so how do you racially profile that sweetheart? you do the math..
if the suspect in this shooting had been of european descent with a history of violence, would we have questioned why he wasn't deported back to some country in europe? because unless he's indigenous to this country, his ancestors too are immigrants. once a violent suspect is of an ethnic background other than european, his/her race because a factor as to why he/she is so violent. when a suspect is of european descent, we talk more about the history and background as to why he/she has chosen to take such a detrimental path in life. i challenge you to question why that is the case. think twice before you feel the need to send people back...
Posted by Ann, a resident of the Barron Park neighborhood, on Jul 16, 2008 at 10:11 pm
I have lived in PA all my life and the only time I can remember people being killed in PA was in just recent years -- the girl celebrating her 21st birthday, the man who went for an evening walk, and now this. All in the same area. Under the nose of the police. Maybe the police should have a bigger presence in the downtown area at that time of night. I think the police do the best they can but there has to be better surveillance.
Posted by K, a resident of the College Terrace neighborhood, on Jul 16, 2008 at 10:36 pm
I'm amazed how almost all articles about crime on here become a debate about EPA. It's disappointing to read the uneducated, biased opinions expressed in this forum. Having worked in EPA for years, it saddens me to hear such angry, sweeping statements to describe residents of EPA. For the most part, these are very hard working families trying to live in peace and provide for their families. Many work more than one job and EPA is where they can afford to live. Yes, there are some exceptions. However, this is not the EPA of the 90s. When there was a spike in violence last year, the community pulled together for a peace rally to protest and the violence decreased. Don't insult these families by assuming that everyone from EPA is bad.
Posted by Calvin, a resident of the Duveneck/St. Francis neighborhood, on Jul 16, 2008 at 11:16 pm
The fact that minorities are associated with crime is not a problem based in those minority communities. It is a problem based in humanity, and is one which Whites have contributed to as much or more than anyone else. Palo Alto is so much more ignorant than I had always believed/hoped.
Key things for you to think about are:
the fact that the color white is so far superior to any other color - many people say asians are successful in America, but they are still 2nd class citizens. What's happened is that Blacks/Latinos/etc. have become 3rd class citizens.
Stratification WITHIN and BETWEEN races. People look at Obama and think blacks have progressed. No, very few of them have progressed - the rest are being left behind at a greater pace than ever before. It's now a high-class/low-class divide within the black community that is the problem, possibly more so than a high-class/low-class divide between whites/blacks, respectively.
Posted by Joe, a resident of the Professorville neighborhood, on Jul 17, 2008 at 12:34 am
The statements regarding E. Palo Alto are certainly not directed towards the honest, working class citizens. Unfortunately, the responsibility largely lies with the leadership of that city which has been entirely inept in adequately addressing their own community problems. The fact of the matter is that the statistics clearly show that E. Palo Alto has one of the highest crime rates in the entire state due to the increased numbers of criminals who live there. As law abiding citizens who live in the local area, we should expect and demand containment of these criminal figures with zero tolerance. If E. Palo Alto cannot demonstrate capabilities, then perhaps a higher authority (state of California) should step in and fix the problem for them.
PS Where the heck is the leadership from the County of San Mateo? There is absolutely no visibility from them.
Posted by Tim, a resident of the Palo Alto Hills neighborhood, on Jul 17, 2008 at 12:40 am
Agree with Joe completely. EPA has been monkeying around with their crime problem for decades. Just because they no longer have the highest per capita homicide rate in the nation, it seems that they are celebrating. Come on, the job is not even close to being done here.
Posted by Resident, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood, on Jul 17, 2008 at 8:10 am
Rather than trying to run EPA down because of its ethnic groupings, I would say that it is because of its low income residents and those who don't work.
Those who work in EPA tend to work hard, but get relatively little income out of it. There are many hardworking people there, often doing more than one job and it is too often to forget that for many of us, they are the people serving us in our fastfood restaurants, waching our cars at carwashes, mowing our lawns and cleaning our homes and offices.
But, for those hardworking people, there are often un-supervised youth at home who spend their free time hanging out with the wrong crowd and getting into trouble. For girls, they are getting pregnant in their teens and bringing babies into the world without fathers or male role models and their sons are being raised with no teaching of what it is like to be an upright man. For the boys, they are spending their time playing violent video games, or watching violent tv, and then going out onto the streets with their friends and getting into gangs and drugs and continuing the downward spiral.
Society has to help these young people break free from this culture. Money needs to be spent on educating these young people and giving them something to do to put their energies into and their respect demonstrated. It is hard for the moral upright in EPA to do this themselves because they don't have the time (because they work so hard) or the money (because low income jobs mean that they only have enough money for basics not luxuries).
EPA is full of nice people, but unfortunately it is the actions of a small number that is making the whole place such a place as its reputation is.
Posted by To Joe, a resident of Menlo Park, on Jul 17, 2008 at 8:18 am
I don't play Grand Theft Auto in my spare time. Get off your high horse & read correctly: I was specifically referring to murder, not overall crime rates.
PA benefits from EPA & E MP - as do the other higher income areas on the peninsula. Always have, always will. Overall, it's a reciprocal, sometimes symbiotic relationship, as is always the case when wealth abuts lower income areas.
As for dropping off thugs - where do they get dropped? Off of Dumbarton Bridge?
Posted by Hunter, a resident of the Midtown neighborhood, on Jul 17, 2008 at 9:00 am
The racist comments here are hilariously foolish and absurd. It was the Germans, as Caucasian and European as can be who masterminded and carried on the largest mass murder operation in human history. It was a white man who carried out the deadliest domestic terror attack in US history, remember Tim McVeigh? Charlie Manson wasn't Tongan or black if memory serves me right? Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld who are responsible for the butchery of a million Iraqi civilians are WASP. All ethnic groups and races commit crimes and murder. Violence is intrinsic to human nature, what matters is how do we reduce it, protect ourselves from it and fight against it.
Also, why do I get the feeling that this was some sort of a gang related payback, not totally random murder, since the killer had already robbed Lacy and had no reason to kill him. I just think there's a lot we still don't know.
Posted by Parent, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood, on Jul 17, 2008 at 12:48 pm
The answer to cleaning up the crime in downtown PA is just so simple - cut off the alchol permits after 9 or 10pm. The drunken partiers, (including the thugs and lowlife losers among them) will go elsewhere. Done.
The only reason for turning downtown PA into party town at night is greed. You reap what you sew.
If the city council doesn't want to (can't afford???) to secure the area with police on the street to control the thugs, then they can't "afford" to run a party town either. Shut it down.
Posted by Fix it already, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood, on Jul 17, 2008 at 12:53 pm
We can fix the crime rate in surrounding crime ridden neighborhoods -buy up the property, knock down the blight, rebuild businesses and services that employ people. Build adequate public transportation so people that want to work there, can live outside the area, and come in to work.
Posted by Hunter, a resident of the Midtown neighborhood, on Jul 17, 2008 at 1:06 pm
If the killer wanted to eliminate all eyewitnesses he would have killed Lacy's friend as well. He left his friend unharmed, which is an indication that this was personal. For some reasons Lacy's friend are avoiding any talk about his source of income, how he could afford to drink in PA bars which are quite expensive and whether he had a criminal record or was involved in criminal activity. Any poster who tries to find out more information about Lacy is being insulted. I just sense that there was more than meets the eye in this murder/robbery/execution and that Lacy's friends don't want the public to find out about it.
Posted by Hunter, a resident of the Midtown neighborhood, on Jul 17, 2008 at 1:58 pm
The background of the victim is important in the context of concerned PA residents trying to understand what happened and the implications for them. If Lacy was chosen at random, it would mean that there is real danger for downtown visitors . If Lacy was involved in criminal activity and the murder was related to that activity, then the situation is different as far as downtown visitors are concerned. Why would the killer allow an eyewitness(Lacy's friend) to live after murdering Lacy, when in all probability his testimony would get him, the killer, the gas chamber? It makes no sense. Again, it's very obvious that Lacy's friends don't want the public to find out anything about his activities and it makes me wonder why.
Posted by Jim, a resident of the Downtown North neighborhood, on Jul 17, 2008 at 3:00 pm
This appears to be a gang-related crime where the criminal was trying to earn his stripes by getting proof he did the crime by stealing the necklace brazenly outside the police station and murdering execution-style. He will gain great standing within the gang for this act, whether he remains free or ends up in prison. Not only does this individual need to be found, arrested and prosecuted, the gang needs to be systematically dismantled through legal means. I would like to know what the PA Police are doing to work with other communities to erradicate these gangs.
Posted by Jane, a resident of the Greenmeadow neighborhood, on Jul 17, 2008 at 3:45 pm
We residents deserve to know if this murder was a gang initiation killing, a random killing or if the victim was involved in criminal activities that made the killer feel it was necessary to kill him. Asking these questioning don't imply lack of respect and sympathy for the victim and his family. This is about us residents making wise choices about our safety, particularly about spending time in PA downtown, especially at night. Regardless of the motive for the murder, I hope he's caught soon and receives the death penalty, but we deserve to know why Phillip Lacy was murdered because our safety is at stake here.
Posted by Hunter, a resident of the Midtown neighborhood, on Jul 17, 2008 at 4:02 pm
I really don't understand why trying to find out what type of activities, if any, Lacy was involved in constitute "attacking Lacy". It's obvious that some people just don't want others to dig too deeply into his background and it makes one wonder why.
The Kay murder around 1997 or so was a random killing by Pacific Islanders thugs and it would be extremely beneficial to would be downtown visitors to find out if they are likely to be victims of random murders or if this particular murder was not random.
Posted by Luke, a resident of Mountain View, on Jul 17, 2008 at 4:05 pm
Regarding "Once we know the probabilities of committing violent crime by ethnicity then we should profile using the rules of logic. This has nothing to to do with racism...". It doesn't? I suggest you look up the very definition of racism. Racism - "a belief that race is the primary determinant of human traits and capacities".
Posted by PA Resident, a resident of the Meadow Park neighborhood, on Jul 17, 2008 at 4:21 pm
In my opinion the ethnic background of the perpetrator is unimportant. What is important is the culture of everyone having the opportunity to own a gun in the United States. You can thank the NRA and their supporters for this.
In societies where guns are banned the murder rate is much lower.
Posted by Arnie, a resident of Stanford, on Jul 17, 2008 at 4:26 pm
Why exactly did the killer have such an easy time getting a gun? Even if he got it illegally, why are we flooded with millions and millions of guns which make getting one, even if a person's criminal record prevents him from buying it legally so easy? This is an insane society, bent on self annihilation.
Posted by Read more than one paper, a resident of the Charleston Meadows neighborhood, on Jul 17, 2008 at 4:29 pm
PA Resident: The NRA and their supporters control the Supreme Court. A gun ban in the United States is going to require a constitutional amendment. Web Link
Given the current political environment in the United States, we stand not a prayer of passing such a constitutional amendment at any time in the reasonably near future. As such, this isn't a practical means of addressing the problem of having a murderer on the loose in our area.
Posted by Gerald, a resident of the Downtown North neighborhood, on Jul 17, 2008 at 4:55 pm
"In Rawanda nobody had guns, yet 1 million people where hacked to death."
You must be joking. Rwanda was flooded with AK47s and many people were shot to death and then hacked to pieces with machetes. I traveled through Rwanda about a year before the massacre and was amazed at seeing even kids carry AK47s.
Posted by brit, a resident of the Midtown neighborhood, on Jul 17, 2008 at 5:07 pm
The point is that the initiation into a gang like the crips often requires killing someone innocent in cold blood. This was started by Tookie Web Link who was fortunately executed in San Quentin in 2005.
Tookie Williams, the founder of the crips was a nasty piece of work
"Robert, asleep with his wife in their bedroom at the motel, was awakened by the sound of somebody breaking down the door to the motelís office. Shortly thereafter he heard a female scream, followed by gunshots. Robert entered the motel office and found that his mother, his sister, and his father had all been shot; the cash register was empty. It was later determined that the Brookhaven incident netted Stanley Williams approximately one hundred dollars with his partner gero.
The forensic pathologist testified that Yen-Yi Yang suffered two close range shotgun wounds, one to his left arm and abdomen, and one to the lower left chest. Tsai-Shai also received two close range wounds, one to the tailbone, and the other to the front of the abdomen, entering at the navel. Yu-Chin Lin was shot once in the upper left face area at a distance of a few feet.
Witnesses testified that Williams referred to the victims in conversations with friends as "Buddha-heads", a derogatory term for Asians"
In the Palo Alto execution the victim was unarmed, had given his money etc and sounds like a decent person.
Posted by question.., a resident of the Old Palo Alto neighborhood, on Jul 17, 2008 at 6:50 pm
Someone posted that they thought changing the alcohol serving time was a solution- a horrid idea. And sorry, I am not a thug and would like to be able to patronize bars, etc without getting shut off at 10pm.
From what I have heard, most Tongans are Mormon and many that are in gangs...still don't drink. I have heard from some people who have worked in local teen centers that these kids who are in gangs still attend church and many don't drink. Obviously, another generalization- but thought I would throw it out there. Maybe the church should get involved if EPA & E. Menlo have no money to run after school programs
Are there any Tongans on this thread who can confirm this? I am totally fine with being wrong...just a question.
Posted by brit, a resident of the Midtown neighborhood, on Jul 17, 2008 at 8:06 pm
Looks like this one is a drunk as well as a gang banger
"Koloto's criminal history includes eight arrests in the past four years, most in the San Jose area, according to court records.
Since 2006, Koloto was arrested twice on suspicion of driving with a suspended license, once on suspicion of drunken driving, once for suspicion of public drunkenness and once for suspicion of possession of a controlled substance.
Prior to Sunday's shooting, Koloto was wanted for two outstanding warrants, including one for a traffic violation, Ryan said. There is now an additional $2 million warrant for his arrest."
I am in favor of the bars closing at midnight in Palo Alto in fact I would just as soon they only serve wine and beer.
It looks like the victim here had a designated driver, but a lot of people rolling out of the bars at 2:00 must over the limit or close and public transportation is non existent at that time .
I don't want downtown to become like city centres in the UK, full of drunken fools , vomit and fights it is a nightmare but at least they have all night public transportation.
Posted by Just trying to make sense of it, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood, on Jul 17, 2008 at 10:44 pm
"The background of the victim is important in the context of concerned PA residents trying to understand what happened and the implications for them. If Lacy was chosen at random, it would mean that there is real danger for downtown visitors ."
Absolutely! It DOES make a difference to me how it happened. The more the story comes out, the more it seems like it wasnít totally random. The victim and the shooter evidently had an interaction before meeting again later in the street. I keep thinking about what one of the reports said about the shooting. It said the shooter started to walk away, then stopped and turned around and fired. Why wouldnít he just keep walking? The most likely reason in my mind would be the victim said or did something that made the shooter turn and fire.
I know what I just said will make the victims supporters flip out, but Iím just trying to figure it out and make some sense of it. I am in NO WAY condoning what the shooter did, there is no excuse for what he did no matter what happened. No one should take a life or have theirs taken away over something so stupid. Iím just trying to learn from the situation so maybe it will help keep me or my family from harm in the future. If it was totally random, our streets are getting more dangerous and at the very least Iíll avoid being out late at night. If it was provoked, it will be another example of the fact that you have no idea if the person you looked at sideways, cut off in traffic or said the wrong thing to has a loaded gun and will take your life in a matter of seconds.
Posted by OhlonePar, a resident of the Duveneck/St. Francis neighborhood, on Jul 18, 2008 at 1:37 am
It sounds pretty random to me--the chain probably attracted attention. Everyone knows that there's parking in the area and it's fairly dark compared to other parts of town. There's nothing that indicates that this was any sort of gang warfare/revenge thing.
In other words, Palo Alto's known to have well-heeled late-night weekend crowd. It's a good place to rob somebody. Parking lots, late at night, are good places to rob people. People who have been drinking are good victims.
Palo Alto's had a real increase in ar,ed robberies over the past couple of years.
Why did he turn and shoot? Who knows, but it could be as simple as the guy thought he heard something. He could have been in a paranoid meth state. He could be a sociopath. He could have been doing the gang thing--or not.
My point is, in and of itself, it doesn't tell us much. Crimes on t.v. have elaborate back stories. Real crimes are often simple and pointlessly stupid.
My guess is that Phil Lacy was in the wrong place at the wrong time and this murder was a stupid, awful thing.
As for safety, don't hang out in the dark areas of the downtown in the wee hours. The murder several years ago in the downtown also took place on a dark side street. Park in well-lit areas, preferably stay in groups. Stay sober so you stay alert.
If someone suspicious seems to be loitering, head back to a more populated area.
Posted by Hunter, a resident of the Midtown neighborhood, on Jul 18, 2008 at 6:53 am
It's possible that Lacy insulted the killer after being robbed and that's what provoked the shooting, but then the question is why didn't the killer kill Lacy's companion whose testimony may very well get him the gas chamber. We must know if this was totally random or not, because if it was random, then downtown PA is a place to avoid at night time.
Posted by Sharon, a resident of the Downtown North neighborhood, on Jul 18, 2008 at 8:05 am
Kay did absolutely nothing other than take a walk and was murdered a block from PAPD headquarters. Until you hear otherwise, why not assume the same about this new victim?
The PAPD locks themselves inside of their bomb shelter and does not have a visible presence in downtown. They have even less of a presence outside of their own headquarters. I think the PAPD is scared.
When Kay was murdered violently, the bleeding hearts in Palo Alto did their best to speak out during the trial of the murderers, asking for leniency and speaking of these poor, impoverished, disadvantaged MURDERERS. Are we going to have more of the same now? Are these same loonies going to take up and defend a MURDERER? How many more murders until people wake up?
Posted by Kate, a resident of the Embarcadero Oaks/Leland neighborhood, on Jul 18, 2008 at 8:17 am
No "bleeding hearts", whatever that means, spoke for the Kay murderers. The Kay murderers cut a deal with the DA to avoid the death penalty. Everybody in PA was shocked by that senseless murder and relieved when the murderers were caught. It's amazing that after almost 8 years of a fascist right wing reactionary administration, we keep hearing the same right wing reactionary drivel in this town which is supposed to be a thinking person's town.
Posted by Sharon, a resident of the Downtown North neighborhood, on Jul 18, 2008 at 8:26 am
During the Kay trial, I remember reading in the newspaper about all of the PA residents defending the poor misunderstood Murderers. I strongly believe that sentiment brought on the "cutting a deal". Hey--maybe one of the Kay Murderers came back to commit another MURDER! Did anyone check to see if they have already been paroled?
I find it interesting now, that we see the same sort of "let's defend the MURDERER mentality" Kate. I've read this forum for the last couple of days and I'm starting to experience a little deja vu.
Posted by Kate, a resident of the Embarcadero Oaks/Leland neighborhood, on Jul 18, 2008 at 8:41 am
I remember the Kay murder and the trial of his killers very well and there was absolutely no support for the murderers on any level, only shock and deep sorrow for Kay and his wonderful family. yes, we didn't get to lynch the murderers, not that some of us didn't want to, but such is life. You are hallucinating and inventing stuff. There hasn't been one comment here that could be remotely interpreted as support for the scumbag who murdered Lacy. Some posters where trying to find out, for their own safety consideration, if Lacy had been involved in criminal activities himself in order to ascertain if this was a random murder, payback among criminals or a robbery that turned into murder, but I challenge you to point out one word of sympathy or understanding for the murderer or his motives. You are inventing stuff out of thin air and spreading nothing but baseless reactionary demagoguery.
Posted by Gerald, a resident of the Downtown North neighborhood, on Jul 18, 2008 at 8:52 am
Sharon, I too remember the Kay murder and its aftermath and I'm completely dismayed at your "facts" that are totally fabricated and invented. If there were comments in favor of the defendants in the Kay murder trial, they were made by the defendants family members and friends from EPA who tried to prevent a life without the possibility of parole sentence after they had already evaded the death penalty through a deal with the Santa Clara DA.[Portion removed by Palo Alto Online staff.]
Posted by Also To Sharon, a resident of Menlo Park, on Jul 18, 2008 at 10:05 am
The police are all over downtown PA on weekend evenings, actually.It sounds like this incident happened so fast & the police were there quickly. They just were not literally in the same place at the same time.
Posted by Tm, a resident of the Adobe-Meadows neighborhood, on Jul 18, 2008 at 10:23 am
also to sharon- the papd was actually the ones who were first on scene, they beard the shots and responded before one of the friends or anyone called 911( not sure if the friends even did cuz the police were there quick)
Posted by Gerald, a resident of the Downtown North neighborhood, on Jul 18, 2008 at 11:47 am
"I can understand some posters attempts to blame the victim in this matter."
No one, I mean no one, has blamed the victim in this matter. People are very disturbed by this vicious murder and are attempting to figure out for their own safety what happened. For example-if the victim, upset at being robbed said something to the killer and the killer retaliated by shooting him, it would mean that it was robbery turned murder and not a ritual gang initiation which might have implications vis-a-vis going downtown for dinner/movie, etc. It has nothing to do with blaming the victim. Even if the victim were a criminal, and I have no information that he was anything other than a low abiding young man, he didn't deserve to be robbed or murdered and no one is suggesting otherwise.
Posted by all i no, a resident of the Midtown neighborhood, on Jul 19, 2008 at 12:16 pm
all i know is, i have seen and experienced raial insults and beatings perpetrated by very white peoples and cops arrest the person being attacked.yes, even black nd latino officers were responsible for this racial injustice. seen it all over usa ,and palo alto ,silicon valley, too
Posted by Old PA Person, a resident of the Downtown North neighborhood, on Jul 20, 2008 at 8:20 pm
It used to be a law that alcohol could not be served or sold within a certain mile-limit surrounding Stanford University.
The most dangerous beverage one could buy was a beer at Round Table Pizza. Perhaps a glass of wine.
Once the limitation on the sale of hard alcohol was lifted, all these low-life bars, meat markets, and "dance clubs" took over downtown Palo Alto. Garbage dumps, all of them. Garbage in, garbage out, garbage from other dumps landing in our once pleasant city.
Time to shut these places down, and send the scum that indulge in these behaviors to places that will tolerate their violence. Replace the dumps with better businesses.
No need for racism, profiling, CCTV, or more cops.
Just stop the flow of hard booze downtown.
Palo Alto might actually become a nice place again - the way it used to be.
Posted by To Old PA Person, a resident of Menlo Park, on Jul 21, 2008 at 9:38 am
I recall a better downtown, too. It's not bad now, just not my fave place -overpriced, yuppie crapola, since it's become a destination. How many bars, rug shops & Italian restaurants does a small downtown really need? I prefer Calif. Ave. And I must say, a few of the more recent times I've been downtown, it was unfriendly, pretentious, & didn't feel safe or welcoming. The bars attract all types - not all bad, but there's that underbelly element - predators, hangers-on, criminals, looking for the right opportunity. These places bring in a lot of revenue & the bars won't take responsibility for their impact, because technically, they didn't do anything wrong. But they've changed the tone. It reminds me of the 90s when there was tons of cocaine dealing out of the downtown bars, especially 42nd street - a block from PAPD.
Posted by History of PA, a resident of the Professorville neighborhood, on Jul 21, 2008 at 11:56 am
To Old PA Person, from another old PA person, I truly don't believe times are worse, just different. And I recall many establishments that sold alcohol downtown. For you to so innocently toss out Round Table Pizza as the only purveyor indicates some selective memory I'm afraid. Right off the top my head I remember the Gatehouse, Henry's, 42nd Street, Jackie's Bar, Lytton Corners, Ed's Place, and the Emerson Street Bar & Grill. I'm probably missing a few others.
Despite recent events, I still believe that downtown is a safe destination. Many people obviously feel the same way judging from the shoppers, diners, and visitors. It makes our community more interesting and enjoyable, if one chooses to see it that way. Quite frankly, back in the 70's and early 80's, our downtown was getting a little outdated and boring.
True, we have some rough edges. Great destinations attract all types. But let's also celebrate the good which has occurred. The old Stanford Theater, nothing more than a boarded up shell, is a beautiful, glorious venue for classic movie fans. The former Veteran's Building, a registered historical landmark, transformed from a burned out abandoned building into McArthur Park Restaurant, a downtown mainstay. And again, I am leaving out many good examples I am quite sure.
Our downtown is filled with great people, restaurants, nightclubs, coffee houses, and interesting things to see and do. Maybe you should try and get more and enjoy it.
Posted by wro, a resident of the Charleston Meadows neighborhood, on Jul 21, 2008 at 8:33 pm
its wrong to ay ALL races have criminal gangs. not prsons of many ancestries.they dont have any group identity that invades countries ,starts fights, etc. there are people of diverse so called races,that dont have political recognition and dont go out in gangs ,like you say all races do.i have never seen a gang or heard on the news about gangs that are composed of the many races of earth,attracking anyone.you cannot say ALL races have gangs,that gives people the excuse to point the blame at a multi race person using the excuse that ALL races have their gangs. thje many race person should show society that thy are all caught in their particular race identity,black white asian latin etc. many race persons dint have a definite human race identity ,besides being relatively universal on planet earth at least.
Posted by vf, a resident of another community, on Jul 21, 2008 at 10:05 pm
after sitting here and randomly reading what outsiders have to say about such an unfortunate situation is sickening. friends of phil's can't get this crazy loss out of our heads and are constantly looking places for answers and updates and have to stumble across something as dumb as a bunch of strangers talking crap about stuff they don't know. phil was an amazing person that any of you would have been lucky to have really known or even met for 5 minutes. He was a son, a brother, an uncle, a friend who no matter what did not deserve what happened to him. i please ask for this to be a place to reflect on what has happened...not to be a disrespectful scenerio of something a stranger is creating of why it did. r.i.p. phil i love you so very much :::::::vf
Posted by ThisWillNotStand, a resident of Los Altos Hills, on Jul 22, 2008 at 5:38 pm
vf, I'm truly very sorry for the death of your friend Philip Lacy and I'd like to ask you respectfully how he supported himself or is it a big secret and asking the question is an expression of disrespect?
Posted by Jim, a resident of another community, on Jul 23, 2008 at 3:07 am
It's really annoying that the Palo Alto Online staff keeps censoring people's comments. It's better to find out where people are really coming from, to get their honest opinions about things, good or bad, disrespectful or not. What happened to freedom of speech?
Posted by nk, a resident of another community, on Jul 23, 2008 at 4:27 pm
All this commentary is very sad to me.....No matter who the victim is....he is a victim...and in my book never is the victim at fault no matter the circumstances. There is no reason for killing someone..the consequences should be severe. What difference does it make, what Phil did for a living???? He has lost his life to someone who solves conflict with a gun........ We should all pray for each other and come to some understanding of this senseless, violent crime which has cost Phil his lif...
Posted by Friend of P.L, a resident of another community, on Jul 23, 2008 at 4:50 pm
Why do people keep asking what Phil did for a living?? And when they do, they try and pose the question with a 'respectfully' point of view. Let's focus on trying to find the man who ended Phil's life. This is so tragic and senseless and I am praying for justice to be served!
Posted by I'd like to know, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood, on Jul 23, 2008 at 5:50 pm
Asking about who and what he was is most definitely a valid question. From what some of his friends have said about him, it sounds like he was the Pope, Mother Teresa and Gandhi all rolled up in one incredible person. Iím sorry but I look at it another way, what is the average type of person who is hanging out downtown at 2 am after hitting the bars? Anyone thatís spent any time cruising around after midnight knows what the ďaverageĒ person out at that time is like. Iím not saying anyone thatís out late at night deserves to be shot, give me a break. Iím just being realistic. My instincts tell me he wasnít exactly the angel everyone portrays him as, he might have had a few drinks, and he might have said or done something that played a part in what happened.
Then again, I wasnít there and I DONíT KNOW what happened. Iím not an idiot though, and I can read human nature pretty well. I, like some of these other people, would like to know a little more about the victim to maybe shed a little more light on what happened. What are some of these incredible things this person had done that I would have been ďlucky to have really know or even met for 5 minutesĒ?
Yes I know youíre not supposed to talk ill of the dead, but the only way anyone can make any sense of things like this is to have all the facts. There is a ton of information that is missing from this and I for one would like more so I can draw my own conclusions. Or at least see if my gut feeling on what happened is right or way off base.
Posted by ThisWillNotStand, a resident of Los Altos Hills, on Jul 23, 2008 at 6:07 pm
Whenever someone tell me I'm not supposed to ask a certain question my conclusion is that I should very much ask that question, because the only reason they don't me to ask is because they have something to hide. Everybody wants the suspect captured, tried and sentenced to the maximum sentence available under our current laws. Not one person suggests that Lacy deserved to die-everybody feels his murder was a terrible tragedy and wish it hadn't happen. However, none of his friends and acquaintances is willing to disclose what he did for a living. Their standard reply is that it doesn't matter and that asking such questions amounts to a justification of his murder and "disrespect" for the victim. This is absurd. Does anyone else get the feeling that whether Lacy was a random victim or not, he had been involved in some shady activities his friends don't want us to know about?
Posted by Resident, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood, on Jul 23, 2008 at 6:10 pm
It is irrelevant, if bars are open until 2.00 a.m. then law abiding citizens will be there. In my youth, I spent a lot of time out and about on a Saturday night and I was not the sort of person to be suspicious of, I was just young and doing what young people do.
What I would like to know more about is the people who are hiding the suspect? Are they keeping quiet because they are scared? There is a killer hiding out there with a gun and someone must be hiding him, feeding him, helping him. They might be doing it because they are scared, someone like this could be holding up and almost keeping a family to hostage, just because they are related to him or have known him in the past.
I hope that someone is brave enough to speak up what they know. Even if the killer has got away, he must have spent some time in Palo Alto and for that amount of time he needed help from people.
Has the reward been made bigger? What can we, the public, be doing to help. Apart from the picture we have nothing to go on. Do we know about his car?
Come on, we have got to get this guy before he kills again. Next time it may be a family member of his, or worse it may be a family member or friend of any one of us.
Posted by Gemini, a resident of the Greenmeadow neighborhood, on Jul 23, 2008 at 6:18 pm
What if Otto Emil Koloto robbery&murder of Philip Lacy resulted from a falling out they had had over some drug deal gone wrong? That would create a very different perspective on the sordid affair and help catch the killer.
Posted by Jon, a resident of the Leland Manor/Garland Drive neighborhood, on Jul 24, 2008 at 1:32 am
Hilarious how people make assumptions, contribute to system justification, and add to their own confirmation biases.
This man needs to be brought to justice and we will not give any situationalist bull about how the "system" wasn't fair to him. He has free will, and his actions have led to the death of an innocent man. With the incriminating evidence, may justice be served.
Posted by Resident, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood, on Jul 24, 2008 at 10:15 am
There is no evidence of any drug dealing so why question it. If the police have such evidence and if they choose to divulge this information, then so be it. But, whatever happened to presumed innocent? It is no business of ours whether a drug deal was taking place unless we are told. The police will divulge information they have in the hopes of catching this killer. They are the experts and the ones in the know. Otherwise, don't cast aspersions.
Posted by Jim, a resident of another community, on Jul 24, 2008 at 10:25 am
I think it's reprehensible that someone got shot in the head just for a gold chain or whatever small items the guy got. I think that the victim didn't do anything to provoke this kind of attack. But when I saw the victim's picture, I noticed that he had a buzz-cut, or a nearly-shaved head. This type of haircut gives you a "gangsta" look. The gangster wannabes like the perp in this case see you as a rival when you dress that way. It's very common in San Jose for youngsters who have no connection to gangs except for their style choice to get attacked for it.
I own guns, and I am very thankful for the right to do so. It is a very rare thing in the history of the world for common citizens to be allowed that much power and freedom. In places like England, the right to bear arms doesn't exist because the Queen doesn't like it. I have no Queen, I am a free man, and I'd really like to keep it that way. It's too bad that some people have to abuse the right, and some other people try to take my freedom and rights away because of it. Thanks to the Supreme Court, my Second Amendment rights are secure for the time being.
Posted by Horrible, a resident of the College Terrace neighborhood, on Jul 31, 2008 at 10:43 pm
I don't believe that all crime stems from the economic slowdown. While that certainly is a factor, I think that a lot of people don't want to see the obvious because it is such a hot button of political 'incorrectness'.
We need to tighten our immigration laws. If it is true that the suspect is a Pacific Islander, then this just adds to a growing swell of crime originating from that group. Google the 'True Blue Crips'. If memory serves correctly, wasn't that young father and NASA scientist who was murdered on Gilman Street downtown also a victim of that group? Herbert Kay?
Two years ago, Paly Graduation was disturbed by a group of East Islanders who caused a rukus when their own kids graduated, and continued the din over the announcements of other kids names. They also completely trashed the grounds with candy wrappers and soda cans. When politely asked to pick them up by some bystanders, they gathered up the garbage into bags then threw it all over spectators while hurling threats. These were grown women, mothers, grandmothers. Not obvious gang types. Just jerks.
While not all people of any culture are cut of the same cloth, I can say from personal knowledge and experience that their culture, through friends, work and acquaintances that at least here, in America; is one of violence and of taking pride in that belief system. I have heard the mission statement (excuse) of these groups up close and personal. I will not dignifiy it by repeating it here. Again, Google it, you can easily find it. I am tired of it. So tired of the ignorance and pride in commiting acts of violence.
I know a lot of people in this liberal city will slam me for my comment, but know this. My grandparents were immigrants. They left Sicily to get AWAY from the influence of the Mafia. They came to America NOT to bring along the worst of their culture, but to celebrate the best of ours. They wanted to assmilate into our society, to enjoy what this country can offer. My grandfather could barely speak English, yet he fought in World War One to defend this country. He worked hard after the war, and became a citizen. He worked for what he needed, he didn't come and enroll on the welfare dole.
I am tired of people coming into this country with attitudes of bitterness toward what we have as a society. They come in here HATING Americans and wanting to simply take from us what we as a people have worked so hard to achieve. Theirs is an immediate culture of entitlement, apparently the moment they set foot on our shores. I have friends who have visited these immigrants homelands, there,they are lovely people. What happens when they come here? Why don't they realize that America is not instant guaranteed wealth, instead it is the OPPORTUNITY to work hard and succeed.
Crime statistics by immigrants, whether legal or illegal, shows a steadily increasing number. We should prosecute, incacerate, then deport. Babies born here should not become automatic Americans. That is from a time when we were a big country and could accomodate a growing population. Now, we are financially supporting a whole new influx of people who have not even paid into our system and who are in fact, taking more than money and services. They are taking lives. These scumbags with no regard for human life make it difficult too, on others of whom wish to emigrate to this country and actually become productive citizens~
Posted by DISGUSTED, a resident of the Palo Alto Hills neighborhood, on Jul 31, 2008 at 11:18 pm
SERIOUSLY SAYS: wow, it's unbelievable reading some of the ignorance on this thread. first off, going back to julie who immediately asked why he wasn't deported...where, sweetheart, in the article was it mentioned that he was an immigrant to this country? because of his dark complexion? because of his ethnic name? because he isn't like your typical white male who drives a prius. you go on to talk about "a rational approach to profiling suspects" - well think about this...what are the chances of a white male being a pedophile? how many child molesters end up looking like your average joe next door? so how do you racially profile that sweetheart? you do the math
INTERESTING HOW THIS CRETIN DENIGRATES A WOMAN BY CALLING HER 'SWEETHEART' IN A MOCKING SUPERIOR WAY, WHILE CALLING HER A RACIST.
TELL ME 'SWEETHEART SERIOUSLY?', HOW OFTEN DO YOU HAVE TO HAVE THOSE CALLOUS'S FILED OFF YOUR KNUCKLES?
HYPOCRITE. NOT OK TO TAG A RACE, JUST OK TO DISCRIMINATE AGAINST A WOMAN.
Posted by Melanie 19 yrs, a resident of East Palo Alto, on Oct 3, 2008 at 7:07 pm
For all those who seem to miss the real point here is that there was an innocent man who got shot here. That still does not make Ottoemil Koloto a cold-blooded murderer. It is true that he has committed a real devastating crime but, it was not because he was "TONGAN" that made him capable of the act. This kid is a citizen of America, and he killed a man from America. So why is it neccessary to some of you that he should be sent back to Tonga? He was born in America people! This is not an international matter!
I myself have been fortunate enough to have gone to the same Catholic church as Ottoemil Koloto and his family did. Both his parents were hard-working, his brothers and sisters loved each other deeply and he had a pleasant childhood. So how is HE different from every Caucasion, African-American, Asian, Hispanic, Jewish, Muslim human being who was led down the same wrong path? We are humans who make mistakes. Some mistakes are small and others can be just as hanous as the ones like Ottoemil has committed. We are still all alike, whether you admit it or not. It makes no sense to point the finger at the Tongan community when only an INDIVIDUAL shot Phillip Lacy.
I am not saying that he should not be punished, I just think he should be punished accordingly towards his crime, not because of his race. Wouldn't that be unconstitutional? Let no one allow their sense of good judgment be clouded with their own pre-concieved ideas of each other's race.
Although it has nothing to do it, it has everything to do with me being a Tongan-American. Thank you for reading.
Posted by Joann, a resident of the Old Palo Alto neighborhood, on Jul 25, 2012 at 4:13 am
Everybody that's talking about he's a immigrant y'all need to Stfu b/c he was born in America like all of us ! Ok!?! So shutup if you don't know my brother like that he ain't no damn drug attic ! This is some selfish comments y'all must be ashame of your self:( I know my brother did something bad but dang doesn't a lot of people do a lot if bad self? God knows he did something bad havent any one did something wrong in there life? But all I know is that I love my Brother and I wish he was here with me rite now:)!!!