Devoted family man killed in Union City's 1st homicide of 2021

Police in Union City are investigating its first homicide of the year. The victim is a 35-year-old father, who was gunned down in front of his home last Friday night.

Union City hasn’t had a homicide since 2019. The one that happened Friday claimed the life of a family man on his motorcycle about to head out for an evening ride when he was shot.

On Sunday, family and friends of Joaquin Tenorio, better known as Kenny, gathered at his home on Queen Anne Drive in Union City to pay their respects and to grieve with his widow Rachel.

"He’s not coming home from work," said Rachel Tenorio. "He’s not going to be in his garage. I know it’s going to tough for us."

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Around 8:30 p.m. Friday, Tenorio can be seen on the home’s ring camera was about to ride his motorcycle. His wife, across the street at a family member’s house, heard a faint gunshot. They all ran out.

"She saw something on the floor and said ‘What’s that on the floor’," said Rachel Tenorio. "We walked here and we saw my husband shot to death on the floor."

Tenorio had been shot at least once. The suspect drove off. Nothing could be done to save Tenorio. 

"Right now our detectives are trying to determine a motive as to why this incident occurred," said Sgt. Jean Jimenez of Union City Police. "They are using all the evidence, all the canvasses and statements."

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"He wasn’t into drugs, he’s not in a gang," said Rachel Tenorio.

 There was no talk of him in danger. Tenorio was one to make friends not enemies, his wife said.

"Everyone loved to be around him," said Rachel Tenorio. "He was the life of the party, always acting silly and dancing."

Why would someone kill him? The family believes Tenorio may have recognized the gunman.

"It could have been like he owed someone money," said Rachel Tenorio. "If that was it, how much did he owe you."

Tenorio had been unemployed during the pandemic. Two months ago, he got a job as a logistics operator at Dow Chemical Company in Hayward.

Tenorio is described as a hard worker. He loved his wife and boys including, a 9year-old, a 5-year-old and a nephew he has raised since he was a baby. 

The family is asking for any help finding Tenorio’s killer.

"It will bring peace to us," said Rachel Tenorio. "Why would I want this person out and about doing this to other people."

A GoFundMe has been set up to help pay for the funeral and his children’s college funds.

Police plan to be more visible and are working with witnesses and neighbors for a suspect description. Anyone with information is asked to contact Union City Police at (510) 675-5207 or tips@unioncity.or