Killing case bumped back

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Otto Emil Koloto, 24

The Gilroy man accused of killing a man near Palo Alto City Hall
in July 2008 is scheduled to enter a plea Friday.
The Gilroy man accused of killing a man near Palo Alto City Hall in July 2008 is scheduled to enter a plea Friday.

Otto Emil Koloto, 22, faces a murder charge, with a special allegation that he personally and intentionally discharged a firearm in the commission of the crime, according to court documents. His plea hearing has been continued multiple times, which is not unusual in a case like his, said Amy Cornell, public information officer for the Santa Clara County District Attorney’s Office.

Koloto was arrested Oct. 2 – months after police believe he shot and killed 27-year-old Philip Lacy, a South San Francisco resident, in a street robbery that spiraled out of control – when police found him after months of searching. Koloto was hiding out in a South San Jose condominium owned “by a friend of a friend,” Palo Alto Police Agent Dan Ryan said. Koloto was arrested without incident and booked into the Santa Clara County Main Jail where he remains in custody.

Another man was arrested in July in connection with the homicide. Donald Robert Lee, 22, who is not from Gilroy, is an alleged accomplice of Koloto’s who was at the crime scene and, like Koloto, faces a murder charge.

At 2 a.m. July 13, Lacy was waiting for friends near the Palo Alto City Hall parking garage after a night of bar hopping when he was robbed and shot once in the head, police said. He died several days later at Stanford Hospital.

The defendants are scheduled to enter pleas 1:30 p.m. Friday in Department 88 of the Palo Alto Courthouse. Koloto is represented by the Public Defender’s Office and Lee is represented by the Alternate Defender’s Office, according to Cornell.