Cash App Founder and MobileCoin CPO Bob Lee was stabbed to death April 4th in the San Francisco neighborhood of Rincon Hill, leading to outrage from residents and tech leaders.
Lee moved to Miami last year concerned about the crime in San Francisco, and to take advantage of Miami embracing cryptocurrency companies. He was back last week in SF for a MobileCoin Leadership Summit in the city and opted to stay an extra few days to see friends.
Lee was stabbed in the early morning hours. He was seen moving around clutching his side, asking bystanders for help, and finally collapsed in the Rincon Hill neighborhood nearby both the financial district and Google headquarters.
Mission Local reported Thursday an arrest has been made in Lee’s murder:
Mission Local is informed that the San Francisco Police Department early this morning made an arrest in the April 4 killing of tech executive Bob Lee, following an operation undertaken outside the city’s borders. The alleged killer also works in tech and is a man Lee purportedly knew.
We are told that police today were dispatched to Emeryville with a warrant to arrest a man named Nima Momeni. The name and Emeryville address SFPD officers traveled to correspond with this man, the owner of a company called Expand IT.
Multiple police sources have described the predawn knifing last week, which left the 43-year-old Lee dead in a deserted section of downtown San Francisco, as neither a robbery attempt nor a random attack.
Fox2 KTVU reported on Momeni:
Momeni listed himself as the founder of Expand IT, Inc in the Besler building at 4053 Harlan Street in Emeryville. The company touts itself as a group of enterprise IT professionals who provide technology support, project management consulting, security audits and helpdesk support. The company’s website was taken down Thursday morning. No one from his company returned a request seeking comment about Momeni’s arrest.
Mission Local reported Lee and Momeni were portrayed by police as being familiar with one another, dispelling the rumor that this was another random attack. “In the wee hours of April 4, they were purportedly driving together through downtown San Francisco in a car registered to the suspect.”
Mission Local continues:
Some manner of confrontation allegedly commenced while both men were in the vehicle, and potentially continued after Lee exited the car. Police allege that Momeni stabbed Lee multiple times with a knife that was recovered not far from the spot on the 300 block of Main Street to which officers initially responded.
This scenario would explain, in part, why Lee was walking through a portion of Main Street in which there is little to no foot traffic at 2:30 a.m. That was one of several incongruous circumstances surrounding Lee’s violent death, which law-enforcement sources, from the get-go felt made it far from a straightforward or random crime.
Mission Local has more details, and names all of San Francisco’s other homicide victims in 2023.
UPDATE, Thursday 2:30pm: San Francisco District Attorney Brooke Jenkins announced charges against Nima Momeni (38) in connection to the murder of Robert Lee. Mr. Momeni has been charged with murder (PC 187(a)) with an allegation that he personally used a deadly weapon (knife) in the commission of this crime (PC 12022(b)(1)).
“I know acts of violence like this shake our communities and I thank the San Francisco Police Department for their tireless efforts to solve this case,” said District Attorney Brooke Jenkins. “With this arrest, we will now work to bring justice and closure for Mr. Lee’s family, friends and our city that has been gripped by this case. My office is working closely with law enforcement agencies and our other city partners every day to enhance and improve public safety in San Francisco.”
On April 4, 2023, at approximately 2:35 a.m., San Francisco Police officers from Southern Station responded to the 300 block of Main Street for a report of a stabbing. Officers arrived on scene and located the victim, later identified as 43-year-old Robert Lee, suffering from apparent stab wounds. Officers rendered aid and summoned medics to the scene. The victim was transported to a local hospital with life-threatening injuries. Despite efforts by first responders and medical personnel, the victim succumbed to his injuries.
Mr. Momeni has been in custody since his arrest, today, April 13, 2023, and is scheduled to be arraigned on Friday, April 14, 2023, in Department 10 of the Hall of Justice at 1:30PM. Prosecutors will seek pre-trial detention in this case because of the extreme public safety risk he poses. Momeni faces 26 years to life imprisonment.
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