Vigil held for Joseph Gatto, murdered father of state assemblyman Mike Gatto

Leanne Suter Image
Friday, November 13, 2015
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Joseph Gatto was shot dead in his Silver Lake home in November of 2013. Police are still attempting to find his killer.

SILVER LAKE, LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- A candlelight vigil was held in Silver Lake to mark the second anniversary of the murder of 78-year-old Joseph Gatto, the father of state assemblyman Mike Gatto.

The Gatto family struggles to grip the thought that Joseph Gatto was found murdered in his Silver Lake home and there have been no clues or arrests in his death.

"A lot of memories here growing up. For someone to come in this house and violate it, and the way that it happened, it's very difficult to accept." Mike Gatto said. "All I have at this point is hope. There is nothing else that I have that keeps me going other than hope. You know technically I am told this is a cold case because it's longer than a year that's pass and leads are not exactly coming in everyday anymore."

Detectives released a composite sketch of a man they said was seen trying to break into a car the evening of the murder.

The city is offering a $50,000 reward in the case, but so far have no new leads.

"We are holding out hope that someone will come forward who knows something, somebody will come forward who has some information on something that they suspect and that might be of some use to the police. People won't know unless they come forward," Mike Gatto said. "I've concluded that I'll never really will have closure, but at some point you just really want to know what happened, and who did it, why and you want to make sure that person is brought to justice so that they can't do it to another family."

Investigators are still trying desperately to track down a female jogger whom they believe came face-to-face with the suspect as he ran from the scene.

Students of the longtime art teacher joined the call for clues to help crack the case Thursday evening.

"He was just such an amazing teacher and he affected so many of the students there. I know he left quite a legacy," said former student Gianina Ferreyra.

Mike Gatto says his job serving the public has helped him through the grieving process and said the crime has changed his outlook.

"Going through this publicly is something that has informed my perspective on what it means for all the families that have been victims of crime," Mike Gatto said.