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‘Go Back to the Ghetto!’: Black Father Who Lost His Son to Gun Violence in Mostly White Neighborhood Gets Harassed at Son’s Vigil

The father of a 23-year-old Black man shot and killed at a Halloween house party is blaming California police for the death of his son and four others at the party.

Raymon Hill Sr. wore a lanyard around his neck donning photos of his late son, Raymon Hill Jr, according to a story ABC affiliate KGO published Tuesday.

“The police didn’t do their job that night. The ambulance didn’t do their job that night,” the father said. “Lives could have been saved.”

Authorities in the mostly white city of Orinda had gotten multiple noise complaints about the party but did not respond until an hour and a half after the first complaint, and two minutes before the shooting, according to KGO.

The focus of at least some of those in the community, however, was on the race of those in attendance at the party and not on the multiple deaths, relatives of Hill Jr. said.

Tonya Loftin, who was the slain man’s aunt, told KGO while she and other grieving families were holding vigil Sunday night in Orinda for those killed at the party, people driving by yelled the N-word and other obscenities.

“That’s what they told us go back to the ghetto,” Loftin told the news station. “It’s not where you live, it’s a respect thing, and we didn’t get that from them.”

Police are investigating whether the shooting is connected to a quadruple murder in San Francisco’s Hayes Valley more than four years ago, the San Francisco Chornicle reported. 

One of the victims in the Orinda shooting, Tiyon Farley, 22, was the younger brother of Lee Farley Jr., who was charged with murder in the incident on Jan. 9, 2015, according to the newspaper.

Authorities identified the three other people killed in the recent shooting as Omar Taylor, 24, of Pittsburg; Javlin County, 29, of Sausalito and Richmond; and Oshiana Tompkins, 19, of Vallejo and Hercules, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.

“I’m ripped apart,” Hill Sr. told KGO.

One of the photos he wore was taken the day before his son was killed, the news station reported.

The father told KGO he didn’t know his son, a musician, was at the rap event billed as the “Airbnb Mansion Party.”

“Somebody was upset in there and let the bullets fly,” the father said.

He described his son as “the greatest.”

“He was genuine, loving, loyal. He loved his music,” Hill. Sr. said.

KGO reported that the Orinda City Council planned to discuss creating short-term rental restrictions to prevent house parties in the area.

Brian Chesky, a co-founder and chief executive officer of Airbnb, tweeted Nov. 2 the company is banning “party houses,” creating a dedicated “party house” rapid response team and expanding its manual screening of high-risk reservations flagged by its risk detection technology.

“We must do better, and we will,” he said in another tweet. “This is unacceptable.”

The company also announced Thursday in a statement it would be paying funeral costs for the families of the five victims.

“We have set aside funds to support the victims’ loved ones with funeral expenses and counseling services, and we have been in contact with those representing Mr. Hill’s family in this regard,” the company said in the statement.

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