Woman from SLO murdered in Berkeley, political activist arrested
January 12, 2017
A 27-year-old teacher who spent her teenage years in San Luis Obispo was stabbed to death in her Berkeley home last week. The murder of SLO High School graduate Emilie Inman has made national headlines.
Officers have arrested Pablo Gomez Jr., 22, for the murder of Inman, a nature program educator in the East Bay. Gomez, a UC Berkeley student and political activist, is also accused of stabbing another woman who survived the attack.
A motive in the attack has yet to emerge. Inman reportedly did not know Gomez.
Gomez was a senior climate action fellow at the Alliance for Climate Education, an organization that still features him prominently on his website. Gomez was also actively involved with the UC Berkeley Queer Alliance and Resource Center.
The Berkeley student was a frequent protester, who in July, posted on Facebook that he was sitting on the Oakland Freeway with thousands of other demonstrators.
“Our demands at this moment stand to disarm the police and work to abolish our current police structure. Our demands will not stop at abolishing the police. We will transform every structure that is poisoned by a toxic whiteness that threatens black lives every day,” Gomez wrote.
Gomez posted frequently on Facebook in support of the Black Lives Matter movement. He also posted in support of Palestine and against Israel.
On Friday, the woman who was wounded in the stabbing flagged down a passerby, prompting the police to come to the scene. Officers later found Inman’s body inside her house. Inman was reported missing earlier in the day.
Police arrested Gomez on Saturday in Burbank. Gomez is from Los Angeles.
Following Gomez’s arrest, the case began making national news due to the murder suspect’s political activism, particularly in the sphere of LGBT issues. A friend of Gomez contacted Berkeleyside, a local news site, to inform the publication that Gomez does not consider himself a “he.” Rather, Gomez refers to himself using the pronoun “they.”
Berkeleyside then altered its story so that it contained Gomez’s pronoun of choice. The correction drew reactions from conservative media.
Additionally, conservative political commentator Ann Coulter posted a link on social media to an Alliance for Climate Education web page that she said showed Gomez posing in a photo with California Gov. Jerry Brown. The URL for the page indicates it contained a blog post authored by Gomez, but the content has been taken down.
Originally from France, Inman moved with her family to San Luis Obispo when she was 10 years old. After graduating from SLO High, Inman attended UC Santa Cruz, from which she received an environmental studies degree.
Inman was working as a nature program educator at Sienna Ranch in Lafayette at the time of her murder. Sienna Ranch has posted a public tribute to Inman on its Facebook page.
“Emilie Inman was a brilliant, passionate, creative teacher and a sparkling, joyful, sincere person,” a the Facebook post states. “Emilie challenged her students and her coworkers to be their best selves, to live life bravely and beautifully. The memories of the compassion and conviction with which she lived her life will continue to serve as enduring lessons to all those who knew her.”
Sienna Ranch said it has been inundated with messages from the families of past and present students who were touched by Inman’s teaching.
In addition to teaching, Inman created art and music. She maintained a SoundCloud profile, on which she published her music.
A memorial for Inman was held this week in San Luis Obispo.