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Slain man's family offers reward

Unsolved murder prompts $20,000 from county, $55,000 from relatives for information

Posted: September 6, 2009 9:23 p.m.
Updated: September 7, 2009 4:55 a.m.
 
Almost a year after the unsolved slaying of Valencia resident Anthony Lombardi, his family is offering about $55,000 on top of an existing $20,000 reward to whomever comes forward with information leading to a conviction.

"The closure for us would be that we can finally sleep at night and not worry," said Michelle Lombardi, his daughter-in-law. "We feel like he would able to rest."

Anthony Lombardi, 55, was found robbed and shot to death in his driveway on Sept. 16.

As the first anniversary of Lombardi's death approaches, Michelle Lombardi has set up a blog and is raising community awareness of the unsolved crime.

Homicide detective Steve Rubino said he hopes that the reward will encourage more people to come forward.

"There has to be someone out there who has some information on this case," he said.

The city of Santa Clarita and Los Angeles County have offered a $20,000 reward for information on the case.

Michelle has raised an extra $55,000 or so in private donations, bringing the total reward to about $75,000.

"We don't feel safe anymore," she said. "It just doesn't seem real that your own family can be murdered in their driveway."

About 11:30 a.m. on Sept. 16, three teens discovered Lombardi's bloody body in a car, which was parked in the driveway of his home on Undine Road.

Michelle Lombardi, the victim's daughter in law, met Lombardi in 1994.

She described him as intimidating, but ultimately accepting.

"He was always thinking about his son, making sure his son didn't get hurt," Michelle said.

Anthony Lombardi was a deeply religious man who took his paralyzed mother to Our Lady of Perpetual Help every Sunday.

He delighted in making pizza for his family and friends, Michelle wrote in an e-mail.

He once even considered opening a pizzeria, and the Lombardi family still meets once a month to try to figure out his secret recipe.

"(He was) really, really devoted to his family," Michelle said. "He was building a legacy for his grandkids. He wanted to leave something behind for them, more than just memories."

Anyone with information about the case can contact Rubino at (323) 890-5500.

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