For any confusions out there, here is the article on the Mercury News website concerning my "BDTO" blog on my friend, Oanh Tran. It was published September 22, 2006.
Family suspected all along that woman was killed
PROBE LEADS TO HOUSEMATE'S ARREST
By Leslie Griffy
From the very start, the parents of the 18-year-old woman with the big smile were convinced she was killed in her East San Jose room.
Investigators weren't sure, pending the results of an autopsy. At one point police told a reporter that Oanh Kim Tran's July death was not being investigated as a homicide.
But after weeks of detective work, San Jose police say they have cracked the case. Police have charged Marlo Pillion Diano, 25, with murdering and raping Tran.
San Jose police wouldn't say much about the case Thursday, but a police report explains how investigators tracked down the suspect.
On July 20, Tran asked friends to call and wake her from a nap about 2:30 p.m.
The next day, friends used the key she'd given them to open the upstairs room she rented in an East San Jose home.
She lay dead on the bed.
For the two months after her body was discovered, her parents insisted she had been raped and killed. In pleas posted on a MySpace.com page created in Tran's memory, her mother spoke directly to viewers. ``Whoever did it,'' Tran's mother says in a video, ``you must report it so they don't do it to someone else.''
Police say the murder suspect lived in the same house, downstairs from Tran with his girlfriend and the couple's baby son.
Officers interviewed Diano the night they found Tran's body.
He told police that they didn't know each other well.
Officers plugged away on the case, though clues were few.
The cell phone friends had called her on was missing. The computer she last used to communicate with buddies, instant messaging them after she got home from work July 20, was gone, too.
Officers re-interviewed Diano. Did he know where a scratch on Tran's neck came from, they asked, according to police records.
This time, according to court documents filed by the Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office, Diano's story changed.
He knew Tran. They'd had sex a week before she died.
Diano said his jealous girlfriend scratched Tran with a key. But he denied he killed her.
He'd been in trouble with the law before, police say. He was on probation for domestic violence. During the assault, he'd threatened his baby's mother with a knife, choked and hit her.
After giving officers a DNA sample for the investigation into Tran's death, Diano left the police station.
It wasn't until Aug. 23 that the coroner's office confirmed what Tran's friends had long thought: She didn't kill herself with an overdose, someone had strangled or choked her.
DNA evidence tied Diano to Tran's death.
During a third interview, Diano handed police the SIM card from Tran's cell phone.
An interview with a friend of Diano's led them to Tran's computer. By Aug. 31, officers requested the district attorney bring charges against Diano.
On the MySpace site dedicated to Tran, friends sadly celebrated his arrest.
``Makes me mad to know he did what he did,'' one wrote, ``but I hope your (sic) having fun up there. Rest in peace baby girl.''