News

Coroner: Stabbing led to Menlo Park man's death

Circumstances still too unclear to determine whether homicide

The stab wounds Lawrence Cronin, 67, received did kill the Menlo Park man two months later, San Mateo County Coroner Robert Foucrault said. However, without knowing more about the circumstances, he was unable to categorize the manner of death into one of three legal categories: accidental, suicide, or homicide.

The coroner described the wounds as "three to four superficial wounds," none in the back, that led to multiple organ system failure.

"He died of injuries related to his stab wounds. That doesn't change. It's the manner in which he got the stab wounds that remains to be determined," Mr. Foucrault said, and explained that the status may change as the police develop more information.

According to the police report, two men attacked Mr. Cronin as he stepped outside his insurance brokerage at 1100 Alma St. around 9:45 p.m. on March 26. He was able to contact his wife after the attack, who took him to a local hospital where he was released in stable condition following treatment, but he died on May 30.

The assailants were both described as Hispanic and about 5-foot-8-inches tall, with short hair and thin builds, and investigators released a sketch of one suspect. Police said Mr. Cronin wasn't able to confirm whether anything was stolen.

Questions surrounding the incident have left those working in the same building uneasy. One worker said that since the attack reportedly took place as Mr. Cronin carried out the garbage that night, workers were worried about their own safety. "The building is right next to Caltrain; there's a lot of transient activity there and it may not be quite as safe as other parts of Menlo Park, I think," he said. "It's a public matter. I understand the family needs privacy, but it's a public safety issue."

The night of the incident, those working nearby reportedly were unaware that anything unusual had taken place, he said.

Police said the investigation remains ongoing.

Comments

Posted by patrick, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Jul 10, 2012 at 10:33 am

From the original story (Web Link):

> Menlo Park police learned of the incident after a call from a Palo
> Alto police officer who was at the hospital. Menlo Park police are
> interviewing the victim, Ms. Acker said.

I still find it odd that he would've contacted his wife before calling the police...


Posted by GOLLY, a resident of another community
on Jul 10, 2012 at 5:01 pm

How long has Mr. Foucault been the SMCounty Coroner?

How is the Coroner elected?
Qualifications?

OH Thanks in advance.


Posted by Why not?, a resident of another community
on Jul 12, 2012 at 7:22 am

@ patrick

Why not contact his wife first? He probably had a stronger bond with her than he did with the PD. He may have felt she'd be more helpful to him at that time than the PD might be. And, it just may be that he wanted her to hear from him before the PD shows up or calls.


Posted by patrick, a resident of Menlo Park: Downtown
on Jul 13, 2012 at 1:48 am

@Why not?

Fair enough - I'm just trying to imagine myself in that situation: If I was stabbed and presumably bleeding I would call 911 without even thinking for a second. Or, if I called my wife, I would expect _her_ to call 911 immediately after my call.

I'd just like to know what really happened that night.

- patrick


If you were a member and logged in you could track comments from this story.

Post a comment

Posting an item on Town Square is simple and requires no registration. Just complete this form and hit "submit" and your topic will appear online. Please be respectful and truthful in your postings so Town Square will continue to be a thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information and opinion. All postings are subject to our TERMS OF USE, and may be deleted if deemed inappropriate by our staff.

We prefer that you use your real name, but you may use any "member" name you wish.

Name: *

Select your neighborhood or school community: * Not sure?

Comment: *

Verification code: *
Enter the verification code exactly as shown, using capital and lowercase letters, in the multi-colored box.

*Required Fields

Services, Dining and Shopping Downtown in Palo Alto
By Steve Levy | 16 comments | 2,021 views

Handmade truffle shop now open in downtown Palo Alto
By Elena Kadvany | 2 comments | 1,635 views

What is the new couple's paradigm these days?
By Chandrama Anderson | 0 comments | 1,016 views

A Street Fair by Any Other Name
By Paul Bendix | 3 comments | 489 views

Separate Entrances for BMR and Market Rate Apartments?
By Stuart Soffer | 0 comments | 224 views