When you like to smoke and it’s against the rules to have a cigarette inside, you can meet a lot of people over the years hanging out near a fence at the end of an alley off East Union. The man killed in a shocking attack Monday morning was remembered Tuesday night by his neighborhood in a candlelight vigil at the corner of 15th and Union where he died in the snow.
Candles were also lit near the alley fence where Joe liked to hang out, drink coffee, chat with the neighbors he warmed up to over the years and, yes, smoke his cigarettes. We’re not naming him, fully, yet as authorities have not been able to reach his family, according to a person close to the situation.
The 58-year-old loved dogs, loved music, had a twice a day 7-11 habit and was, if you gave him time, a friendly grump, his friends and neighbors said.
Authorities arrested 26-year-old Capitol Hill resident Michael LaRosa within minutes of the killing on Monday. He remains jailed as prosecutors prepare charges against him.
UPDATE: Seattle Times tracked down LaRosa’s half-brother in Florida who said LaRosa was diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia and was taking medication for his condition.