UPDATE: LAPD Homicide detectives recovered the sledgehammer in the alley near where Guillermo was murdered, and verified accounts of the suspect being in the alley during the time frame of his assault have been confirmed. The autopsy may give investigators confirmation if the individual with the sledgehammer could be a possible murder suspect after all.
LAPD Homicide detectives are back in the alley between Washington and Anchorage today looking for clues and investigating the death of Guillermo Perez who was stabbed to death just after midnight last Sunday evening. Officers were responding to a report of a man with a sledgehammer when they were flagged down regarding a man laying in the street. At first officers believed the man was drunk and passed out, a very common occurrence here in Venice. He had several beers in his possession including one open container. He was not conscious, and he soon stopped breathing. CPR was administered and he was taken to a local trauma center where he was pronounced dead. There were no witnesses to any altercation prior to him being found on the street.
Several reports have come in however about a 6′ tall white male with sunken facial features who seemed to be tweaking out and extremely violent, who was armed with a knife and screaming about his girlfriend just prior to the attack on Guillermo. One transient who got into an altercation with the man had to hold up his guitar case to fend off the knife swipes. He looked like a meth user, and unfortunately since Venice has plenty of influential local “leaders” and neighborhood council people who encourage making our area as welcoming and comfortable for transients as possible – we have a population that is next to impossible to manage, and their resulting crimes lead to daily scenarios that continue to degrade the quality of life in our community. And now, possibly murder.
Detectives were combing the area again today looking for local transients and areas where they bed down in search of any leads and clues. The difficulty of this task is now overshadowed with the yearly announcement that the Winter shelter program which begins December 1st will once again use our park at Venice Beach as the pick-up and drop-off area at OFW and Market Street… which has had nothing but a negative impact on the area, in addition to attracting more transients and related crime to our main tourist area and adjacent neighborhoods. The homeless “storage locker” program will apparently also be in swing again. A program that when implemented last year had ONE person who used it, and abandoned their belongings before the Steve Clare’s folks went out and recruited people to use it so the program didn’t get such a horrific failing grade and black eye. Of course belongings were still abandoned at the end of the term, but once again these programs are just passed and implemented with the assistance of the neighborhood council.
Please don’t let the fact that LAPD homicide detectives are now looking at the homeless community for leads and clues to Guillermo’s murder escape your attention. The pier has been a repository for violent drunken homeless, supplemented by the local bathrooms and showers for a long time… fed by the local liquor stores that serve them despite being drunk. It has long been said that someone has to die in Venice for anything to be done… but sadly I don’t even think a man working two jobs to feed his new family suffering such a fate will be enough to yank community leaders out of their stupor of protecting our transients that rely on crime to exist.
If you have had enough, what can you do? The silent majority has never had the influence to move the needle on these issues as the embedded mob of stallwarts think that time doesn’t progress, things don’t change, and maybe if they keep things as they are they won’t personally age or something. They don’t have a problem with people scooping up property and flipping it into section 8 housing, but they want people who can afford property to turn into vacation rentals in our vacation community to pay more fees and taxes ( in addition to the ones they already pay ).
Just like the information that a meth deal gone bad resulted in the deadly vehicle rampage that killed and injured innocent people on the boardwalk this past summer, if this murder is tied to the transient community – Venice Neighborhood Council & 11th Council District… SHAME ON YOU.
In the meantime, please help Guillermo’s family at the two events this weekend at Mercedes and Baja Cantina – the two places where Guillermo worked.
This Saturday at Baja Cantina from 10am-1pm we will be holding a fundraiser for Guillermo Perez and his family. Please come & show your support.
Join us for a silent auction being held at MERCEDES GRILL&BIN 73 THIS Monday at 7pm. Proceeds go to Guillermo’s Wife and baby.