Monday, November 17, 2008

Jing Hua Wu: Hear of him? He's a metaphor...

If you weren't continually watching TV, or if you didn't live in the SF Bay Area, or if you're not Chinese or close to any Chinese you might have missed this story:

There was no indication that Jing Hua Wu posed any danger when he walked into the offices of his Santa Clara employer Friday, a few hours after he'd been fired. So there was no reason for three top company officials to refuse his request for a meeting.

But some time after Wu and the three executives went into a room to talk, police say, the 47-year-old engineer pulled a 9 mm handgun and shot all three dead.

Nineteen hours later, a Bay Area manhunt ended when police cars swooped into the parking lot of a shopping center at El Camino Real and Grant Road in Mountain View. Wu was unarmed and made no attempt to struggle, police said, when officers piled out of the cars at 10:45 a.m. Saturday and handcuffed him in front of the Home Consignment Center store...

Police identified the victims as Marilyn Lewis, 67, of San Jose, who was the company's head of human resources; Brian Pugh, 47, of Los Altos, who was vice president for operations, and Sid Agrawal, 56, of Fremont, who was the company's co-founder and chief executive.

Now a few years ago, this would have made front page news, but I guess now it's just commonplace, although it's quite a rarity for the Bay Area.

And as it turns out, this happened to be a lot closer to me and my family than I'd have wanted - despite the fact that this happened in the Bay area and we're in the Pacific NW.

Seems Jing Hua Wu owns/owned houses. Rental properties. In the "Greater Vancouver WA" area.

And I happen to know one of the agents involved in the transaction.

Suffice it to say that we spent Saturday morning, before we heard of this, talking to Vancouver's finest, who didn't seem entirely aware that there might have been a rampaging mass murderer on the loose.

We joked that they'd have to contact the tenants and tell them they had good news and bad news. The good news was that they might not have to pay next month's rent.

The bad news was that their landlord was a rampaging mass murderer.

Luckily they caught him.

And so the collapsing economy and the collapsing real estate market, has collapsed get rich quick schemes, and created a little Columbine nearby, 6-degrees of separation-wise.

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