Actress demands justice after her brother’s murder in Fresno


FRESNO, California (KSEE) – A Central Valley family is demanding justice after a senseless act of violence in Fresno over the weekend, one that ended with the death of a Hollywood actress’s brother. 

Joshua Thao, 36, was shot and killed early Sunday morning near Belmont and Backer Avenge. Police say he was there to help someone who had been in a car accident when several other relatives or friends of the other driver involved showed up and there was an argument and someone pulled out a gun and shot Thao. 

“He is not just a man who died here on the sandy rocks, his name is Joshua Thao,” said his older sister Brooke Chia Thao.

Pieces of Joshua Thao’s life make up a growing memorial at the spot he took his last breath. 

The 36-year-old worked in Fresno as a mechanic. 

“That night he was trying to help his friend get home safe. He was worried about his life, his friend’s life,” said Thao.

Thao was born in Visalia to a big family but his sister says he had an even bigger heart. 

“His nieces and nephews see him as a father because that is who he was to them,” said Thao.

His sister Brooke Chia Thao may be familiar to some. She played the mother of Thao and Sue in Clint Eastwood’s classic movie Gran Torino. She says since her brother’s death, her family is in unimaginable pain. 

“He will never be a father, he will never fall in love, he will never have that chance,” said Thao. 

Anyone calling with information can remain completely anonymous by contacting Crime Stoppers at 498-STOP. You may also contact Fresno Police Department – Homicide Detectives Manuel Romero at 621- 2451 or Detective Ryan Rockwell at 621-2425 with information regarding this investigation under Fresno PD Case# 20- 44997.

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July 23 2021 05:30 pm

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