On the night of his death Diego Escalante was living in a homeless encampment near South 38th and McKinley Avenue. He was a friendly guy who had worked as a cook. He was funny. And he loved to share stories from the bible that he had memorized. At 1:30am on September 25, 2021 he was sitting in a chair when an intoxicated 21-year-old approached him and shot him three times. Diego died on the scene.
When the mother of the 21-year-old heard about the murder she had suspicions her son was responsible. They lived nine blocks from the homeless encampment. Her son had purchased a pistol and he had frequently talked about how he felt homeless people should be killed. She contacted police with her suspicions and her son was charged with first degree murder.
Diego’s killer did not know him and had no previous contact with him. By all account Diego was a random victim of a mentally deranged intoxicated young man who had all too easy access to deadly weapons and violent urges. His death was a senseless act of violence that ripped a hole in the lives of all who knew and loved Diego.
The animosity towards homeless individuals is just as misguided as any other form of bigotry.
As always, the comment section is moderated and reserved for those who knew Diego and want to share thoughts or memories of him.
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