SAN JOSE (CBS SF) — The friend of a San Jose woman murdered in her own home by an undocumented immigrant with a long criminal record on Monday said Bambi Larson’s accused killer deserves the death penalty.

Diane Collman is a local author and friend to South Bay homicide victim Larson. She is outraged and demanding both justice and a change to the policies that allowed homeless undocumented immigrant Carlos Arevalo-Carranza to walk free despite his lengthy record.

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“And I want to know, why he was allowed to be here?” asked Collman. “And why the hell he wasn’t taken and put somewhere where he could never get back out and do this?”

Collman remembered Larson as a special friend who was always giving over her time.

“She was the gentlest, kindest, most decent human being,” said Collman.

The two first met when she was Larson’s yoga instructor. The two became close friends over the years.

Larson was there the night before Collman went in for a risky surgery to remove a cancerous tumor. She was there when Collman lost her home to water damage.

And Larson was one of the few people who showed up to Collman’s local book signing event.

Collman described Larson as a once in a lifetime kind of friend.

“She showed up in my life in good times, and she showed up in my life in really hard times,” explained Collman. “And what’s even more extraordinary is I never had to ask her. She just showed up.”

Investigators say security camera footage captured Arevalo-Carranza entering Larson’s home in the early morning hours of February 28.

Detectives say the suspect stabbed Larson in the neck and torso several times, then walked down the street, ditching bloody clothing in a garbage bin.

Arevalo-Carranza crossed the border in 2013 and has a long rap sheet, including meth use, petty crimes and battery of an officer. ICE had submitted so-called detainer requests to hold the suspect until they could question him.

But according to county policy, the detainers were not honored, and Arevalo-Carranza was released a total of four times in Santa Clara County.

“And it’s much bigger than her poor grieving family, or a poor grieving friend,” said Collman. “This is much bigger now.”

Collman said that legislators bear some of the responsibility for what happened to Larson.

“And some of the policy makers, they sit behind iron gates. They have protection. They make the rules for the rest of us,” said Collman. “And I can tell you that my friend was a very law abiding human being. She trusted those rules. She followed them. She thought they were keeping her safe. And they failed her.”

Collman told KPIX she wants more than justice for her friend. She wants her brutal homicide to be a catalyst for change.

“I want our community to feel a sense of outrage. And I want her death to stand for something,” said Collman. “She was good to me and a lot of people like me. And I want her to save lives now.”

When asked if she felt Arevalo-Carranza deserved the death penalty, Collman was adamant.

“I want the death penalty over and over for this monster. Of course I do! Of course I do,” she said. “And I’m a yoga instructor! I’m somebody who wouldn’t hurt anything.”

But because of the moratorium on capital punishment signed by Governor Gavin Newsom last week, the death penalty will likely not be an option in this case.

Comments (7)
  1. Miah Termanini Williams says:

    I totally agree with Mrs. Dianne Collman request for the “community to feel a sense of outrage.” I am angry to see silence followed Mrs. Larson’s death. we have seen many protests and anger in the streets for murders, then, why no one protested and demanded justice for Mrs. Larson. Were are her family, her friends, her neighbors? how come they are quiet? or, could it be that the police and the governor asked the family to keep quiet because they harbor illegal immigrants and dangerous criminal aliens? I stand with Mrs. Collman when she said:” I want her death to stand for something,” Where is Justice?

  2. Justice from Suckramento or the county? Good luck with that. I hope the murdering “migrant” literally rots during his prison sentence.

  3. Jeffrey Wherry says:

    I knew Kate Steinle from having met her in the operating room. While I can’t say that I was a close friend, I can say that she was one of the kindest people I’ve ever met. The world is a much diminished place without her. It is an absolute tragedy that we keep allowing this sort of thing to happen.

  4. Scott Harrington says:

    If you disagree with the county’s policies you need to let your district Supervisor know. I have emailed District 4 Supervisor Susan Ellenberg with my thoughts.

  5. Bob Pecca says:

    The people close to her should sue the sanctuary city, it’s the only thing they understand. They are complicit in her death.

  6. Robert Reuss says:

    Can anyone explain why the elected and appointed officals, who are responsible for these sanctuary policies, aren’t charged with depraved indifference murder in these cases?

  7. Linda Kerska says:

    County officials and Newsom should be personally sued for their continued negligent and irresponsible policies that are the direct and only cause for this situation. They need to stop putting everyone, but law abiding Americans citizens first! The Sanctuary Laws are an absolute outrage. Sanctuary counties should have been de-funded by the federal government and the officials upholding and supporting those laws jailed. I literally live 5 minutes from Bambi’s home and believe me, no one in any of the surrounding neighborhoods, which incidentally are incredibly diverse, support sanctuary “laws.”

    Had my family known that we could have just saved ourselves the years we spent on legally entering this country and could have just strolled across the border, maybe committed a few crimes along the way and still would have been welcomed with open arms in this f’kd up place, we could have saved ourselves years and just jumped the line and came in as criminals illegally. Apparently even committing crimes (on top of the initial crime of entering illegally) wouldn’t have gotten us removed. Who are the officials protecting?!! Clearly, not actual citizens.

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