Vigil honors local college student killed in Craigslist robbery - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Vigil honors local college student killed in Craigslist robbery gone bad

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MISSION BEACH (CBS8) - The father of an 18-year-old La Jolla High School graduate thanked his son's friends for their support at a candlelight vigil Thursday night, less than 24 hours after Garrett Berki was robbed and then murdered after being lured into a Paradise Hills neighborhood by a Craigslist ad.

Edward Berki said of his son Garrett, "he was a good kid... He touched everybody's life. He was just happy going. He loved the ocean," adding, "When God calls you, you can't do anything. Even I couldn't do anything, and I can do a lot of things in life, but I couldn't save him. God called him and it was his time, it was his destiny."

Family and friends of the Mesa College student gathered on the beach right in front of his family's home in Mission Beach, where Garrett and his friends would hang out during the summer. Garrett's dad reflected, "I saw him last night, he gave me the biggest hug ever and he said, I love you, Dad."

Hours later, investigators say Garrett and his girlfriend went to Paradise Hills to buy an item advertised on Craigslist, but when they got there, they were met by three 17 year olds who robbed them of their cash and cell phones at gunpoint. Investigators say Garrett and his girlfriend followed the suspects, trying to get their license plate number, but when the suspects hit a dead end, they turned around and fired a shot as they passed the car Garrett was driving and killed him.

At the vigil, Garrett's family reminded the young crowd not to take life for granted. His mom Connie said, "Garrett always told us how much he loved us." His sister Monica added, "you go home and hug your family and you tell them how much you love them, because you don't know the last time you're going to be able to see them."

Homicide Lieutenant Kevin Rooney wouldn't reveal what it was that Garrett was attempting to purchase, except to say it wasn't an auto part as some of his friends believed, and that it was a legitimate and legal item.

The three 17 year old suspects are expected to face murder charges as adults in court Friday. Friend Andy Gibbs told News 8, "They don't deserve anything less, it's not humane what they did, it's not human. Who does that? It's a Craigslist ad, and you kill someone?"

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