One Dead, One In Custody After Homicide In Orinda Home

A 62-year-old Orinda man is in custody and awaiting charges in connection with the death of his live-in girlfriend after a domestic dispute ended in murder Tuesday.


Orinda police have arrested a 62-year-old Orinda man in connection with the death of his 51-year-old live-in girlfriend, killed in the residence they shared in the 600 block of Moraga Way.

Police Chief Jeff Jennings said a 90-year-old neighbor called police to report a murder at the residence at 12:18 p.m. Tuesday, and that dispatchers could apparently hear the male suspect telling his neighbor where police could find the crime scene over the phone. The suspect, who shared the home with the victim and who allegedly had a history of domestic violence upon her, returned to their home when police arrived and was taken into custody at that time, Jennings said.

The police chief said investigators were confident they had the correct individual in custody for the crime and that neighbors needn't worry. He described the homicide as a domestic dispute "which ended in murder."

Police making entry to the home found the unidentified victim on the kitchen floor of the residence, according to Jennings. Officers located a weapon believed to have been used in the killing but would not say how the woman was killed. Jennings said the suspect made spontaneous admissions of responsibility for the killing when he was arrested.

Any motive for the killing and the exact nature of the relationship between the person arrested and the victim have not yet been disclosed. The 90-year-old neighbor who called police was later taken to the hospital for observation after telling officers he did not feel well.

Neighbors said the man who owned the residence was "nice" if a little "different." A neighbor who declined to be identified told Patch the suspect had been living at the home for decades and had a girlfriend living with him for the last ten years or so. The neighbor talked to the man on Monday, about "normal things," and said that nothing seemed amiss.

Reports that the woman's niece was also at the residence shortly before the killing could not be immediately verified.

Tuesday's homicide is believed to be the first in Orinda since the 2002 killing of psychotherapist Felix Polk by his estranged wife Susan Polk.

Born and Raised June 26, 2012 at 08:24 PM
I just hope the owners and neighbors are OK. Oh and that the police catch the little thieves.
Julia Duncan June 26, 2012 at 08:26 PM
Don't think it was a burglary. Too many cars/area roped off
Stu June 26, 2012 at 08:32 PM
Besides police and fire representatives from each of the cities there are a number of Federal Agencies that are actively involved. The scene continues to grow in size as they have just roped off an additional property.
SevenMary7 June 26, 2012 at 09:05 PM
First one in how long?
michelle June 26, 2012 at 09:07 PM
Thanks for the updates - we live up the hill and heard all of the sirens and were a bit concerned what was going on.
J.D. O'Connor (Editor) June 26, 2012 at 09:16 PM
Of course. Terrible news.
John Eriksen June 26, 2012 at 10:09 PM
I believe the last one was in 2002 by Susan Polk.
Born and Raised June 26, 2012 at 10:40 PM
The orignal post at 1:00pm said it was a call of a robbery at the residence apparently the worst case scenario has been played out. So sad.
No Thuggin' June 27, 2012 at 12:01 AM
There was a murder-suicide on El Toyonal earlier this year. Elderly man checked his elderly wife out of an unknown nursing home, took her home, killed her and then killed himself.
Shon Sherwood June 27, 2012 at 12:35 AM
I drive by that house every day... I imagine a lot of folks do.
Jose June 27, 2012 at 01:11 AM
Deborah: I have no desire to restart the JM teacher discussion here, but for the record, the video link you provided cannot possibly be construed as an "apology". They simply pleaded ignorance and admitted no wrongdoing. I object to spinning it as an apology, even if you did it inadvertently.
X June 27, 2012 at 02:24 AM
Very sad. My sympathies to the family.
lynn June 27, 2012 at 02:41 AM
I would like to know where is the little girl that was living there? I hope see is okay!
Sherry Lynn Carlay June 27, 2012 at 04:19 AM
Her niece just left the house this morning with another family member. Not sure of they even know yet. This is so sad :(
Brad Katkowsky June 27, 2012 at 04:51 AM
Really sad. There's a lot going on behind closed doors that next door neighbors aren't even aware of. Condolences to the victim in this and to her family.
Michael Taylor June 27, 2012 at 02:37 PM
Big news in our little town. Condolences to the families involved.
Lourdes June 27, 2012 at 02:54 PM
A tragedy. So sorry.
MF June 27, 2012 at 03:45 PM
I ride my bike by this house frequently. On Monday I noticed the suspect working on his roses in the front yard. How quickly things change.....sad
lynn June 29, 2012 at 12:16 AM
Thank you Sherry for letting me know that the niece is okay and with other family memebers. This is very sad, I feel for the niece, if you hear of the niece needing anything please post. I would love to help her!


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something