Issue:  Vol. 48 / No. 11 / 15 March 2018

Murder, pedestrian death cases moving in SF court

A decades-old murder and the 2011 death of a gay pedestrian are among the criminal cases making their way through San Francisco Superior Court.

Today (Friday, June 29) the jury trial date for defendant William Payne, 47, (seen at left) was set for August 3. Payne’s been charged with committing first-degree murder during the course of sodomy in the death of Nikolaus Crumbley, 41. Crumbley’s body was found in John McLaren Park in November 1983.

San Francisco police arrested Payne in January 2012 after matching DNA from Crumbley’s body to him. The San Francisco Medical Examiner’s office listed the cause of death as ligature strangulation.

Payne is in San Francisco County jail on $5 million bail.

Also Friday, jury selection had been expected to begin in the trial of Gregg Wilcox, 60, but that process will now likely begin next week. Wilcox faces a misdemeanor charge of vehicular manslaughter in the September 2011 death of gay pedestrian Bill Cox, 59.

Wilcox had been wearing a walking cast on his right foot when he allegedly struck Cox (seen at right) with his SUV, prosecutors have said.

David Douma, 60, whose home Cox used to visit frequently, said Friday, “A day doesn’t go by that we don’t remember Bill, especially at about 9 o’clock in the morning, when he used to come over here for coffee.” Cox had just left Douma’s home when he was hit. Wilcox is not in custody.

In another case Friday, a jury trial date of August 24 was set for Carl White, 47. White faces felony charges of assault with a deadly weapon, making criminal threats, vandalism, and burglary after an April 2012 incident in which he allegedly beat a 33-year-old gay man while calling him a “fucking faggot.” According to San Francisco Superior Court records, the victim suffered bruising to his face in the incident, which occurred on Blythdale Avenue in the city’s Sunnydale neighborhood.

The case, which apparently stemmed from a dispute between the victim and White’s girlfriend, doesn’t include a hate crime allegation.

White is in custody in San Francisco County jail on $50,000 bail.

Finally, a preliminary hearing had been set to start Thursday, June 28, for Douglas Kinder, 61, but that date’s been moved to July 12.

Kinder faces accusations of arson and other crimes after a June 13 incident at a house in the largely gay Castro neighborhood.

He’s been charged with felony counts of possession of an incendiary device, residential burglary, and arson of property. Kinder (seen at left) also faces misdemeanor charges of resisting arrest and battery on a police officer.

No one’s been arrested in connection with several arson fires that hit the Castro last year.

Asked if Kinder is suspected of being involved with those incidents, Alex Bastian, a spokesman for the district attorney’s office, said, “We’re exploring all possibilities at this time.”

Kinder is in San Francisco County jail on $400,000 bail.

— Seth Hemmelgarn, June 29, 2012 @ 6:58 pm PST
Filed under: Uncategorized

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