Crime Stories from San Francisco Neighborhoods:
Each week we will be presenting notorious crimes that occurred in your San Francisco neighborhood. Isn’t it nice to know that even the most peaceful neighborhood has a few skeletons in the closet.
Episode #2 Glen Park- The Death of the Boss from Hell 1914
George and Harry Gray gave even unbridled capitalism a bad name. The brothers made millions running a strip quarry business in upper Noe Valley. The damage they created by dynamiting on Telegraph Hill causes landslides in the winter, even today. The Gray brothers blasted rock in their quarry in Glen Park, damaging local homes and injuring children. Their abuses lead to the first environmental movement in San Francisco. They were also notorious for not paying their employees, who were often forced to take them to court. The City Attorney called the Grays 'constant law breakers.'"
In their spare time, they probably pulled the wings off flies and ran over kittens and puppies.
In 1914 Joe Lococco, a 26 year old immigrant from Italy worked for them but quit because of failing health. Because he had not been at work on payday (he had been sick in bed) Harry Gray did not pay him his back wages. Because of Gray's actions, Lococco’s family had not eaten for two days and was facing eviction from their Potrero Hill apartment. In desperation Lococo went to see Gray again at the 29 and Castro street quarry. When Gray laughed at Joe’s tale of misery. Lococco lost control. He pulled out a gun and killed Gray. When he realized what he had done he gasped, "God, forgive me." Whether God forgave him is a complex theological issue on which there may be conflicting opinion. Whether San Francisco forgave him is a simple matter of history. Following a sensational trial in April 1915, the jury found Lococco not guilty by reason of temporary insanity and released him
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