More than seven years since a gruesome murder that left a Venice chiropractor dead and homicide detectives remain baffled over the who and why.
Dr. Robert Rainey had arrived early for work inside Rainy Chiropractic at 9245 W. Venice Boulevard on May 31, 2012. Surveillance video from a nearby business shows him arriving, walking up the stairs and going into his office. Within an hour, another figure appears to do the same, but the video is too grainy for police to make out.
"He was in his office, alone," says LAPD West Bureau Homicide Detective John Lamberti. "He was brutally beaten in his office by someone who to this day we still have no idea."
Lamberti took over the cold case this year and says tips — even all these years later — continue to flow in.
"This case has stuck in the consciousness of people who live around here," he says. "Dr. Rainey was an ordinary guy. He got up in the morning, he went to work, he treated his patients, he went running every day with a running club and he went home to his wife and that was it."
Rainey is the brother of Los Angeles Times reporter Jim Rainey, who says his natural instinct to seek out information has helped LAPD come up with possible leads.
"We came out here and met up with some people in the homeless community here who thought they might know something and we worked that angle," Rainey says, adding that nothing panned out from the search.
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"For our family, it's like, my brother's not coming back," he says with a heavy heart. "And it's very, very sad. He was a great person, a great man and I miss him all the time."
Dr. Rainey was 54 years old when he was killed. An avid athlete, he ran ultramarathons, climbed some of the world's highest mountains — and planned to outlive his own father who died just two weeks shy of his 97th birthday.
"My brother was like, I'm gonna live to a hundred," says Jim Rainey. "He was serious, and then he reconsidered and said, I think I can do a hundred and 5."
Lamberti says there was nothing in the doctor's past that raised any red flags, including the department's investigation into cellphone calls and emails leading up to the murder.
"When somebody is brutally murdered we can usually look into their life and find something we can grab onto that might have precipitated this terrible act but in this case, there's nothing," he says.
He believes the killer told someone about the murder and hopes that someone will come forward.
"Whoever did this, I would think, has told someone," he says. "Somebody knows who did this, why and what happened."
For the Rainey family, they're just seeking the justice they say Dr. Rainey and the community deserves.
"They took away this person who was a really good, kind, gentle person," his brother, Jim, says, "and the person who did it is none of those things."
Anyone with information is asked to contact LAPD West Bureau Homicide Detectives at 213-382-9470. Callers may remain anonymous.