Andrew Emmett (right), shown here with his brother Ryan Emmett, was killed in a homicide near San Francisco's Union Square on Feb. 7. (Photo courtesy of Ryan Emmett)

SF tourist killed near Union Square knew Petaluma family accused of murder

A 31-year-old tourist killed in San Francisco last week was close friends with the Petaluma family arrested in connection with his slaying near Union Square, according to his brother.

Andrew Emmett was visiting from Colorado when he was found unconscious in a wheelchair Wednesday evening near the hotels on Post Street between Mason and Taylor streets, according to his family and police. Emmett suffered numerous cuts and bruises and died at the scene. His brother said he did not use a wheelchair.

The following day, police arrested Christopher Hardee, 47, Nicole Hardee, 40, and their son Kayleb Hardee, 19, near Petaluma. All three were jailed without bail on suspicion of murder, conspiracy, robbery and residential burglary.

“We’ve been an absolute wreck,” said Ryan Emmett, the victim’s brother, who also knew the Hardees. “I just don’t understand how this happened. They just killed him in the middle of the street.”

The Hardees were arrested Thursday at a residence at 184 Marshall Ave. in Sonoma County outside the Petaluma city limits, according to authorities. The San Francisco Police Department said it executed a search warrant with the Petaluma Police Department and Sonoma County Sheriff’s Office.

Sonoma County Superior Court records show that a Chris Hardee and Nicole Violet Hardee became guardians of a 3-year-old child in 2016. A judge was asked to terminate their guardianship on Friday.

Ryan Emmett said Christopher Hardee called him the night his brother died. He had met the Hardees “plenty of times” and even spent Christmas with them.

“He called me at midnight on the night that he was killed and asked me, ‘Hey, have you heard from your brother?’” Ryan Emmett said. “‘I can’t find him, I am looking for him, I saw he was in this hotel’ or whatever.”

Ryan Emmett said he last saw his brother two weeks ago and did not know where he was staying in San Francisco.

Andrew Emmett lived with his brother in Breckenridge, Colorado, and was raised alongside his brother and two sisters in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He enjoyed live music and worked odd jobs, from fixing roofs to selling crystals.

“It was pretty normal for him to go to San Francisco,” Ryan Emmett said. “He would go to shows… I know he had a lot of friends there.”

Ryan Emmett remembered him as “completely fearless.”

“Everybody remembers him to be the type of person who would always make you laugh,” Ryan Emmett said.

Andrew Emmett was the sixth homicide victim in San Francisco this year.

Editor’s note: This post has been updated with additional information.


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