Police continue search for couple
suspected in death of housemate
By Ashley Wright and Maya Strausburg
February 14, 2008
Police continue to search for a couple last seen about a week
before their housemate's body was found in the back of a van,
San Francisco police Sgt. Steve Mannina said yesterday.
The body of Leonard Hoskins, 49, was recovered from the van eight
days after the vehicle was impounded by police Jan. 24 from outside
a home in the unit block of Lamartine Street, Mannina said.
Not long after the body was recovered, homicide investigators
obtained arrest warrants for Hoskins' housemates Richard Carelli,
38, and Michelle Pinkerton, 38.
Carelli reportedly lived in an in-law unit at the home with Pinkerton,
who is his girlfriend, and the couple's infant child, Mannina
Hoskins' sister reported her brother missing to Oakland police
several weeks before Hoskins' body was found. Mannina did not
know why she reported it to Oakland police rather than to San
Hoskins' sister did not call San Francisco police until Jan.
23, after she talked to a neighbor who reported seeing Hoskins
and Carelli fighting in the garage of their residence in late
December, Mannina said.
Police officers went to investigate the home on Jan. 24, Mannina
Carelli was reportedly at the home when officers searched for
evidence, but Mannina said he did not know the extent of the statement
Carelli gave to police.
Officers towed a van that was parked outside of Hoskins' house
on Jan. 24 and placed it in their custody that day, believing
it may have been evidence of a crime. Police waited for a search
warrant to search the van so that all items recovered would be
admissible in court, Mannina said.
A week later, on Feb. 1, police searched the van and found Hoskins'
The arrest warrants, $5 million for Carelli and $1 million for
Pinkerton, were issued shortly after the body was found.
The couple is also wanted on child endangerment charges, Mannina
said. They lived together with their infant child, 6-year-old
daughter Viana Carelli, who was under the care of her grandmother,
according to Mannina.
Mannina said the couple likely fled Jan. 25 after reportedly
picking up Viana from her grandmother's home. A warrant for child
endangerment charges had been issued before Hoskins' body was
discovered, according to Mannina.
Police believe the couple is traveling in a white 1996 Mercury
Mystique with California license plate 5VIB951.
The two are considered dangerous and may be in Mexico, Santa
Cruz or Las Vegas, Mannina said. Anyone who sees or comes into
contact with the suspects is asked to call 911.
Additional law enforcement agencies have become involved in the
search for Carelli and Pinkerton, Mannina said. The FBI has not
become involved in the search for the couple as of today, a spokesman