Jealousy May Have Been Behind Brutal Murder in South San Francisco Gym
Diego Galindo loved his family. He especially loved his young niece, Daniela. Back in May, Galindo changed his Facebook profile photo to one of the toddler. She sits there in a pink princess tutu dress and flower headband, staring off into the distance.
She won’t get to know the uncle who loved her so much.
Kealani Osako also loves her family. She loves her father, Kenneth, and is his biggest defender. “There are two sides to every story,” she wrote on her Facebook page Saturday.
For 16 years, Galindo worked as a butcher at the Carniceria Tepa in South San Francisco. Marta Sanchez, a friend and coworker, described the 43-year-old to the San Francisco Chronicle as a wonderful person: “He had a big heart. He was a kid with the body of an adult, but a kid at heart.”
He had a big heart, and a big body, one he kept fit. The San Bruno resident was a longtime member of the Bally Total Fitness Gym in South San Francisco.
So was Kenneth Osako. In his booking photo, the 46-year-old sports a piercing in the shape of a miniature dumbbell through his right eyebrow.
South San Francisco Police are still trying to determine if the two men knew one another. This much they do know: On Wednesday, September 17, at around 9:30 p.m., Osako and Galindo had some sort of altercation inside the gym. A little later, as Galindo was working out, Osako allegedly grabbed a solid steel bar used for lifting weights, came up behind Galindo and struck him on the head several times before dropping the improvised weapon and fleeing the scene, according to a South San Francisco Police Department news release. Paramedics rushed Galindo to San Francisco General Hospital, where he died from his injuries the next day.
Witnesses inside the gym identified Osako as the killer. On Thursday, police got in touch with Osako, who was out on a plumbing job. Osako informed them where he was located and surrendered without incident, according to Sgt. Tom Neary of the South San Francisco Police Department.
“How cold-hearted could you be?” Sanchez said of Osako for going about his daily routine after the murder. “You didn’t throw a rock, a little pebble at somebody—you killed somebody. You took somebody’s life away.”
Police are investigating a motive for the crime. A possible motive suggested by Kealani is jealousy. She told KTVU that she spoke to her father after his arrest, and he claimed that Galindo was flirting with his girlfriend. “The man was trying to get my father’s girlfriend to leave with him and that didn’t go well with my father, obviously,” she said.
She apologized to the Galindo family on her father’s behalf. “I know he’s sorry and I know he didn’t want this to happen.”
Meanwhile, workers at Carniceria Tepa are trying to come to terms with their loss. “It’s just really hard to imagine him not here,” Sanchez said on Friday. “Everybody is devastated.”
A candle for Galindo burns on the counter, alongside a donation box to help pay for his funeral.