Widow of paramedic killed in Oakland speaks, teen on trial for murder

Liz Boyer is holding out hope that her late husband's dream of a better Oakland will be the ultimate result after his murder.
October 29, 2013 7:45:02 PM PDT
Liz Boyer is holding out hope that her late husband's dream of a better Oakland will be the ultimate result after his murder.

She was in court today when a judge ruled a 16 year-old boy will stand trial for killing her husband, off-duty paramedic Quinn Boyer. Boyer was shot to death in Oakland last April.

A police sergeant testified Christian Burton confessed to firing the shot that killed Boyer. Burton's attorney says his client's confession was coerced.

Boyer's widow said this is a case where everybody loses.

"It's just, it's travesty all around. There's no, I don't see where it's going to have a happy ending," she said.

Liz Boyer said she didn't come to court to seek retribution, but rather answers as to why her 34 year-old husband became a random victim on an Oakland Hills street.

"I'm more concerned with how it came to pass in the first place, as opposed to really pinning or focusing on a punitive solution, because for us there's no satisfaction. We don't get Quinn back," said Boyer.

Boyer and a large group of family, friends and her late husband's fellow paramedics appeared for a preliminary hearing for Burton.

Burton is accused of firing a single shot that hit Boyer in the head. Burton's family and his attorney claim the boy is innocent.

"There's an independent witness who basically told police that the shooter had a white baseball cap and the witness does not describe my client as the shooter who had a jean jacket on," said Burton's attorney Ernie Castillo.

But prosecutors argue Burton was one of six young teens on a crime spree that began with a carjacking at a High Street market, a crime partially caught on video surveillance.

Later, prosecutors say the same group, in the stolen car approached Boyer as he sat on the side of Keller Avenue and that the teens intended to steal his car and iPhone.

"The best possible thing that could come from this whole situation would be for people to remember Quinn. The things that he believed in, one of which was he loved this city and he wanted to see it reach its potential," said Liz Boyer.

A judge ordered Burton held for trial as an adult. If convicted, he could face the death penalty.


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