By Jim Smith
The Abbot Kinney Festival, Sept. 28, ended with a senseless murder at 9:20 pm as vendors and maintenance people were finishing the dismantling of hundreds of booths along the boulevard.
Instead of a pleasant day of happy reunions and wonder at the crafts and arts stretching from Venice Blvd. to Main Street, the day will always be remember as the end of the life of 31-year-old Adam Pacheco.
It’s unknown whether the gunman and the victim knew each other. The shooter apparently fired six shots into the crowd at San Juan Ave. and Abbot Kinney. A woman driving down Abbot Kinney was hit in the face, but continued to drive to California Avenue where she sought help. She was taken to UCLA hospital but released the next day.
The murderer ran around the corner and escaped in a white truck driven by another man.
Ironically, there were more police officers on Abbot Kinney than could be found any other time of the year. Still more ironically, none of them saw the shooting.
However, lots of local people did see the shooting. Calls to the Beachhead gave differing descriptions of the shooter and how he escaped. Most witnesses said he was white, some called him a skinhead. One even said he had blue eyes.
However, The LAPD issued a press release saying the killer was a 17-18 year-old male Hispanic. In response to a question from the Beachhead at a press conference, Sept. 30, at the Pacific Division, Homicide Detective Mike DePasquale said that one witness had told the police that the shooter was Hispanic, while another had said he was white or Latino. In spite of the conflicting witnesses, the police described him as a Hispanic, and implied that the shooting was gang related.
The confusion about the identity of the shooter may have been caused because he wore a hooded jacket when he performed the crime.
Asked why the street had not been cleared by 9:20 pm, as in previous years, LAPD Capt. Joseph Hiltner said only that the police were considering an early closing time in the future.
This was the second shooting in Venice within a week, and followed a murder in Mar Vista Gardens five days earlier. Police said both shootings were unrelated to the Abbot Kinney crime.
Anyone with information about the murderer should call the LAPD at 310-482-6316.