There's been some misinformation and telephone-game reporting happening with Friday morning's grisly quintuple murder in the Ingleside district originally thought to be a murder-suicide but a key bit of intel from sources found by KTVU emerged over the weekend: The motive may have been a gambling debt. Investigators still have not revealed any possible motive, though they do say there was no sign of forced entry, and as we discussed yesterday, the prime suspect in the case is 35-year-old Binh Thai Luc, a man who authorities say may have "prior ties" to a Vietnamese street gang.
Though there's been no official identification of the victims, neighbors and a relative have spoken to the press to reveal that the five people murdered in the home at 16 Howth Street were a family who immigrated from China. They were a couple in their 60s (including, most probably, the homeowner listed for the property, 65-year-old father Hua Shun Lei), two adult children including 37-year-old Yingxue "Jess" Lei, a software engineer; and her 32-year-old brother; as well as a woman "in her 30s" who appears to have been the brother's girlfriend.
Despite an early rumor* that seems to have come from the Weekly that the discoverer of the bloody scene Friday morning was a 12-year-old girl along with her grandmother, further reporting seems to indicate that the woman who first found the murder scene was an older daughter in her 40s, who came screaming out of the house saying "they killed my brother" and saying "can someone please help me?"
One male body was found near the front door around 7:45 a.m. Friday, while two more were found in the garage, and two more female bodies were discovered upstairs at the rear of the house.
One neighbor reported Friday that she heard shots fired while having breakfast, however another neighbor, Miriam Mendoza-Moody, told KTVU that she heard yelling around midnight the night before, "some very loud male-voice person arguing or yelling." She added, "It was discomforting, and my dog became agitated."
Police have not revealed the specifics of what they've called an extremely bloody set of four crime scenes, but they did not recover a weapon from the scene and only say that some "edged object" was used in some of the slayings. They've further called it one of the worst mass slayings in city history.
The incident brought S.F.'s homicide count to 14 for 2012.
* SF Weekly has asked us to stress to our readership that said rumor came directly from an SFPD officer.
PREVIOUSLY: Arrest Made in Friday's Quintuple Murder