Fatal shooting of 2 brothers happened at Airbnb house party in Oakland, company confirms

ByLeslie Brinkley, Melanie Woodrow via KGO logo
Tuesday, October 4, 2022
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Airbnb confirms Oakland shooting that killed two Berkeley High students, brothers happened at rental party being used for birthday party.

OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) -- As the community mourns the death of two Berkeley High School students and brothers, new details are emerging about where the fatal shooting took place.

San Francisco-based rental platform Airbnb confirms that 17-year-old Jayz Sotelo Garcia and his 15-year-old brother Angel were shot and killed at an Airbnb rental property that was being used for a house party.

RELATED: 2 teen brothers shot dead at Oakland house party leave behind 4 younger siblings

Writing in an emailed statement:

"We join the Oakland community in condemning the criminal gun violence that prompted this senseless tragedy. Our priority at this time is providing our support for those impacted, including our Host, and we are in touch with the Oakland Police Department to support their investigation."

Airbnb tells the ABC7 News I-Team the party was unauthorized and thrown without the knowledge or consent of the host, who prohibits parties in the House Rules of the listing. That's in addition to Airbnb's platform-wide party ban.

In August of 2020, Airbnb announced a temporary ban on all parties and events in listings globally partially in response to a growing number of pandemic parties. Due to its effectiveness, In June of 2022, Airbnb codified the ban as its policy.

In August of this year, Airbnb introduced anti-party technology in the US and Canada to help identify potentially high-risk reservations.

RELATED: Oakland police making changes to crack down on gun violence after 9 killed in 9 days

The system looks at a history or lack of positive reviews, length of time the guest has been on Airbnb, length of the trip, distance to the listing and weekend vs. weekday booking.

Airbnb says it also requires guests in the US to undergo identity verification and a background check.

Airbnb says it removed the booking guest for this party from its platform.

Jayz and Angel are survived by their mother and four younger siblings - a 13-year-old, 9-year-old, 6-year-old and 3-year-old.

Their cousin says the teenaged brothers went to celebrate a birthday Saturday night when several gunmen entered the home on Apgar Street and opened fire.

RELATED: New cellphone video shows students running out of Oakland campus after shots fired

Now the grief is unbearable.

"We cannot move forward with funerals and seeing their bodies until the investigation is completed. It really hurts," said family spokesperson Melani Garcia. "Because of this we won't be able to grow old together. We won't be able to experience adulthood together as we experienced childhood."

The boys were both students at Berkeley High, where grief counselors were dispatched Monday to meet with staff and classmates.

"Every time you get that call it feels like thte first time. It rips out your heart and devastates you in ways you can't explain," said Berkeley Unified Superintendent Enikia Ford Morthel.

RELATED: Berkeley High offering counseling services, other resources after 2 students fatally shot in Oakland

At Berkeley High School there was no memorial outside. But students walked in on Monday morning with bouquets of flowers intent on mourning and grieving their classmates.

The family set up a GoFundMe page to help Jayz and Angel's mom, a single mom, cope with the loss of two sons. In less than 24 hours they've raised over $75,000 to help with funeral expenses and rent. And the support has been uplifting.

"It's really been warming our hearts knowing our boys are so loved and knowing that the community is here for us. That really helps a lot," said Garcia.

A vigil is set for 7:00 pm Monday at nearby Longfellow Middle School to honor the 17-year-old and 15-year-old boys.

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