A Case of Extreme Incompetence by SFPD Homicide Detectives or Something More Sinister?
SAN FRANCISCO: 1972
Andy Kinyon was a former Palo Alto, CA. resident who located to the city of S.F. in 1965. In the early morning hours of Saturday January 22, 1972 Andy was found dead in the stairwell of his North Beach residence at 1367 Grant Ave. (corner of Green St.). He had been stabbed once in the heart and then had his gut and throat slashed (all 3 wounds would have been fatal on their own). He was just 29 years old.
Andy was headed home after a night on the town with his girlfriend when they were confronted by a man in front of the S.O.S. grocery market on Grant. The girlfriend claimed she did not know who this man was, but the evidence shows that she was too scared to name the person, at least initially. She became so spooked by this encounter that she decided to go to her sister’s place across town instead of staying the night in the apartment she shared with Andy and his roommates.
Not long after, a neighbor heard two men arguing in the stairwell of the apartment building, one of them repeatedly screamed “You bet you’re gonna pay!” and then there was silence.
Andy’s body was found by another neighbor a short time later.
A suspect’s name was given by many in the neighborhood and many witness statements indicated that this person was out to get Andy. Andy’s girlfriend told detectives that Andy believed this suspect was going to kill him over a money debt. Despite this information the suspect was allowed four days to go without questioning and had plenty of time to dispose of evidence (such as bloody clothes) as well as change his appearance (shaving off his heavy beard and cutting his hair short). Why were the police not at his apartment that night or the next day?
There is no indication in the case file that detectives ever visited the suspect’s apartment, in fact, they’re not even the ones who tracked him down; a friend of Andy’s noticed the suspect sitting in a car a block from the crime scene four days after the crime and flagged down a passing police cruiser – this lead to the suspect being brought in for questioning (but there is no record of an interrogation in the case file). His knife was confiscated at this time, as well as his shoes which had blood drops on them, covered with shoe polish. The amount of blood was supposedly too small to test and the detectives indicated that the knife had been “boiled clean”.
What followed for the next 40 years was nothing short of a cover-up. It was either a cover-up of extreme incompetence on the part of Homicide detectives or something much more sinister.
The Main (and ONLY) Suspect
SUSPECT: Eugene “Geno” Imbrogno
ALIASES: Eugene Santore, Robert Chiudina, Eugene Giglio, Richard Inprogno, etc.
BORN: Sept. 21, 1935 (New York)
DIED: March 1984 (Fairfax, CA)
Eugene had the motive, means and opportunity to commit the murder.
He had threatened Andy’s life several times over a debt in the months leading up to the crime. Two weeks prior, he and an accomplice beat Andy badly and demanded money.
His alibi was blown by the very friends he claimed could prove he was not in the neighborhood at the time of the crime. He claimed that he was several blocks away and couldn’t have committed the murder, but his friends told detectives that they left Eugene standing on the very block that the murder took place, approximately 20-25 mins before it happened. One of them volunteered that Eugene was extremely upset about something.
When he was finally brought in for questioning 4 days after the crime, he gave his address as 1458 Grant Ave., which is less than a block from the crime scene and directly across the street from the S.O.S. Market where Andy was confronted and threatened, likely by the killer, approx. 15 minutes before the murder.
At the time of the murder, Eugene was out on probation for threatening to cut the throats of two women who worked in a clothing store in North Beach, he made “slicing motions” with a knife at one woman’s throat and chased the other one down the street, knife in hand. They had refused to buy used clothing from him, they said, because they lived in a hotel building where residents reported to police that “Geno” was regularly burglarizing rooms. Later that same night, after being questioned and released on his own recognisance, Eugene again confronted the two women with his knife, this time at their residence, and threatened their lives again.
There was a least one eyewitness to the murder who either saw the killer commit the crime or flee the scene. This person said that the killer was a “friend of Andy’s”, that the killer regularly hung out at the Camel Bar (next door to the crime scene), and that they were aware the person had a criminal record. Unfortunately, this person’s name is not in the case file, neither is any statement from this person… in fact, we’re not sure if this lady was ever talked to by the Homicide detectives. She had given a statement to Robbery detectives who then forwarded the information to Homicide.
It’s inexplicable to Andy’s family, as well as many others who have reviewed the facts of this case, that this man was never brought to justice. Despite the fact that there was no investigation beyond the first week following the crime, there was plenty of damning evidence against him. On top of everything else, it was only recently that the family found out that they had been consistently lied to by homicide detectives for 40 years – see: TRUTH & LIES (on the navigation menu) – and this has inflicted even more emotional damage.
This case is officially UNSOLVED and is now in the hands of the COLD CASE UNIT @ San Francisco Police Department – BUT – we are also conducting OUR OWN PRIVATE INVESTIGATION – SO PLEASE CONTACT US FIRST WITH ANY INFO! Any information, even rumors, can be of some help.
PLEASE EMAIL: KINYON COLD CASE