East Palo Alto man is shot to death
Publication Date: Wednesday Feb 5, 1997

POLICE: East Palo Alto man is shot to death

City's first homicide of 1997 tied to loud music

An East Palo Alto man was shot and killed early Sunday morning, apparently because he was playing a radio too loudly.

The incident began when Jaime Tajimaroa Huante, 25, of 2187 Clarke Ave., came home about 1 a.m. Sunday, Feb. 2, and was playing his car stereo loudly, said Sgt. Don O'Keefe of the East Palo Alto Regional Investigative Bureau.

A man staying at the Clarke Street house, Guillermo Baltazar Bernal, 19, complained to Huante about his radio, and the two men started arguing, O'Keefe said.

At that point, witnesses saw Bernal fire a semiautomatic handgun into the ground in front of Huante, who was standing in the kitchen doorway. Witnesses told police that Bernal then shot Huante in his arm, and Huante fell down on the kitchen floor. "Bernal then came into the residence and fired two more shots into Huante's body as he lay semi-conscious on the floor," O'Keefe said.

After the shooting, Bernal ran off and Huante was taken to Stanford Hospital, where he later died.

O'Keefe said that Huante suffered gunshot wounds to his head, his body, and his arm. His wife and their two young children, ages 1 and 2, were sleeping in another room of the house when he was shot, O'Keefe said.

The killing was the first of the year in East Palo Alto, which had one murder in 1996 and six in 1995.

Bernal is wanted for murder and police say he is "considered armed and dangerous." He is described as five feet, nine inches tall with a thin build, curly shoulder length hair, a thin mustache, and partial silver caps on two front teeth. Police do not have a photograph of him.

Anyone with information is asked to call O'Keefe at 853-3154 or Detective Juan Lopez at 853-3178.

--Don Kazak

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