Multiple Subjects Arrested in Connection to the Fordham Arson


Pictured (left): Gilbert Gomes and Brandon Pak (right)

On March 16th, 2014 at 2:18am, Mountain View Fire Department (MVFD) and Police Department (MVPD) responded to the 1700 block of Fordham Way on a report of a single-family home on fire.

MVFD and MVPD initiated a joint investigation of the incident and through that investigation believe the fire was caused by arson, which originated from inside the residence. The Santa Clara County Fire Investigation Task Force along with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) assisted MVPD as the investigation moved forward. In addition to the arson, a light blue, 2003 Audi A4 was stolen from the residence and since recovered.

Through the investigation, Detectives discovered that starting on March 7th and the following weekend, multiple large parties with heavy drug and alcohol use were hosted at the unoccupied home. Attendees included students from surrounding high schools and a local college. On the morning of March 16th, three juveniles started a fire inside the residence which they were unable to extinguish.

Since March 17th, detectives began to serve multiple search warrants at residences in Mountain View and Los Altos resulting in the arrest of twelve (12) juveniles and two (2) adults.  Juvenile charges ranged from Arson, Burglary and Auto Theft to Drug Possession and Drug Sales (the names, ages and charges of the arrested juveniles will not be released due to their age). More arrests are expected as the investigation continues and additional subjects are identified.

The two adults were arrested for the following charges:

  • Brandon Pak (18)  – Burglary (Penal Code 459/460(a), Child Endangerment (Penal Code 273a(a)) and Providing Marijuana to Juveniles (Health and Safety Code 11361(b))
  • Gilbert Gomes (18) – Burglary (Penal Code 459/460(a)) and Child Endangerment (Penal Code 273a(a))

Anyone with additional knowledge of the party is encouraged to contact the police department via telephone at 650-903-6344. You can also come into the police department located at 1000 Villa St.

Anonymous tips can also be sent via text to 274637. Please include “mvtips” in the body of your message so that we receive it.

If you have any questions, please contact Sgt. Saul Jaeger, MVPD PIO, at 650-903-6345 or

8 thoughts on “Multiple Subjects Arrested in Connection to the Fordham Arson

  1. Kalli

    I feel like it’s really unfair to release the names of the 18 year olds, yet withhold the names of their peers. Even though some were minors and some adults, I bet they were in similar grades. They’re in the same schools, and probably have the same maturity. The 18 year olds have been named and shamed, but their friends haven’t because their birthdays were later on in the year. I think this is ridiculous.

    Charged with endangering children? Were those children in the same grade? Being born a month later could have stopped these kids from having that charge. Are we expecting them to be more mature and responsible than their peers because they were born slightly earlier?

    I feel so sorry for the family, and there is no excuse for drugs and underaged drinking. These were dumb children being dumb. I’m just questioning how fair this really is, holding two individuals to a higher standard and a harsher punishment (publicly shaming them being part of it) than their peers.

  2. Kindel Launer

    All high school guidance programs speak directly with seniors about the adult responsibilities and privileges that come with a person turning 18. Parents, too, need to be talking to their children about this critical milestone.

    Let’s focus on the frightening fact that all the young people involved appear to have made their way to this “party house” without much parental knowledge. Let’s support parents by encouraging them to question where their children are, who their children are out with, reasonable curfews and timely check-ins. A great guideline is: “trust, but verify.” Teenagers value their parents’ concern, even if they don’t often show it.

    We are lucky beyond words that there aren’t any funerals to attend in the coming days.

    1. Kalli

      I’m a high school senior and no guidance counselor or teacher has spoken to me or my peers about the responsibilities of turning 18.

  3. karl

    Good work by the Mountain View Police. Don’t fall for the “just kids” excuse here — these people are burglars, arsonists, and auto thieves.

  4. cuesta resident

    i feel it’s really fair and fitting, the law needs to be the same for everyone, even if they are your friends. their parents are the ones that should be ashamed of themselves for letting such thing happen.

  5. Cuesta Area Neighbor

    Kalli: Was it fair that these kids broke into a home they had no business being in? Was it fair that they trashed the place, stole items, and burned the house? Was it fair that they not only defiled this home but the neighborhood it sits in? Whether a a guidance counselor spoke to you or not, are you seriously so stupid that you don’t understand that your friends had no business in that home to begin with? You can fight for your country at 18! You can vote at 18! Is your generation so self absorbed that those things don’t at the very least give you clues about the legalities that come with being 18? For God’s sake, get a whiff of reality!

  6. Pingback: Fordham Way Arson Update | Mountain View Police

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