Investigators link body found near Niles Canyon Road to East Palo Alto disappearance

Tests under way to determine if victim was same as man attacked in armed robbery last February

Investigators are trying to determine if a decomposed body found in unincorporated Fremont is that of a 27-year-old East Palo Alto man who was reported missing in February, an Alameda County Sheriff's spokesman said Friday.

Investigators found a man's body at about 12:15 p.m. Thursday in a hidden area off the side of Niles Canyon Road about a mile east of Mission Boulevard. Sheriff's spokesman J.D. Nelson said Friday the body is likely that of Francisco Lopez, but because it was decomposed it will take time to make a final determination.

In the early morning hours of Feb. 26, Lopez and his brother went to a house on Standish Avenue in unincorporated Hayward that had a large marijuana growing operation, Nelson said. Their visit "turned sideways," he said, and Lopez and his brother were attacked by armed men at the house. Lopez's brother was able to escape, but Lopez was never found, he said.

Nelson said it's not clear what happened at the house, and investigators don't know if Lopez and his brother were trying to buy drugs at the house or if they had planned to steal drugs from the people living there.

Authorities haven't yet determined exactly how long the body had been decomposing and only know it was between one month and one year, Nelson said.

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Like this comment
Posted by Sad
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 27, 2010 at 11:29 am

May he now rest in peace!

Like this comment
Posted by concerned parent
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 28, 2010 at 2:35 am

Hopefully the police will be able to notify the family members soon, through fingerprints, DNA, etc. There's nothing worse than not knowing where your family member is and wondering if they're okay then hearing news like this and wondering if it is someone you love.

Even if you don't get along with your parents, at the very least give them a call them from time to time to let them know you are okay and safe.

I wish young people would understand the importance of carrying their ID with them at all times and also that hanging out with the "wrong people" could be dangerous.

I haven't heard from my 19 year old son in over a month and am very worried about his safety and where abouts. As a parent, this is the worst feeling in the world.

Like this comment
Posted by Mike
a resident of Highland Oaks
on Aug 28, 2010 at 2:47 pm

No sympathy here for anyone in that house, neither occupants nor visitors. They were all involved in criminal behavior, so they made their own beds, so to speak.

Like this comment
Posted by Jamie
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Aug 29, 2010 at 2:14 pm

To concerned parent, I hope your son calls you. I have a 20 yr old son who still lives with me. Sometimes when he doesn't come home at night, I am very fearful. I can't imagine what you are going through. Good luck. I will pray for you.

Even though this man may have been involved in criminal activity, he was still a human being. Lots of people make bad choices in life but that is no reason to kill them and throw them out like garbage. I'm sure he has a family that loves him. At least now they can have some peace. After all, they didn't do anything wrong.

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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