Appeal for Action in Marc Thompson’s Murder Case

On Wednesday, September 3, 2014, StirFry Seminars & Consulting’s beloved friend and colleague, Marc Thompson, was found dead in his burning car 25 miles northeast of Oroville, CA, in Butte County. His case is being treated as a homicide and the fire thought to be ‘human caused’. (See Oroville Mercury-Register “Foul play suspected in death of Chico State student found in torched vehicle”).

Marc, a respected and engaged Black community leader, activist and student at Cal State University- Chico, recently appeared in StirFry Seminars & Consulting’s documentary film, If These Halls Could Talk, directed by Lee Mun Wah.

This case parallels several other local deaths, in particular the Butte County murder in 2013 of three Black victims: Colleen Lowe, her son Roland, and his friend Richard Jones, all found shot to death also in a burning car. (See Sacramento Bee, “Butte County authorities tentatively ID homicide victims from Sacramento”).

More recently, on May 24, 2014, the scorched remains of Russian-born Marat Magdeev were found in a walnut orchard south of Hamilton City. Detectives believe flammable liquid was poured over the body and ignited in an effort to destroy evidence (See Oroville Mercury-Register “Glenn, Butte detectives continue homicide investigations after two men found burned”).

There are many unanswered questions in our friend Marc Thompson’s case as well as the others, such as, “Are these possible hate crimes? Are the public and Marc’s family being fully informed by the police? Are the multiple similar cases linked by a single killer or group?” We are invested in a thorough and transparent investigation and in justice being served for Marc. Although Marc had a strong community presence, we are concerned that, without community persistence, a murdered Black man will not get the attention his life (and death) deserve. As Lee Mun Wah said, “We will not let his life go unnoticed.” We offer our true condolences to Marc’s family and any support they could use.

StirFry Seminars & Consulting is a diversity training company, providing cross-cultural communication training for educational, government, corporate and social service agencies, in hopes of promoting authentic and healthy relationships. The company also makes diversity training materials such as documentary films (The Color of Fear) and books (The Art of Mindful Facilitation).

For more information contact (press only):
StirFry Seminars & Consulting

Marc Thompson’s Case

3/1/16:  Black Lives Matter on campus, The Orion, Molly Sullivan

2/25/16:  Marc’s life matters:  Black Lives Matter rally at Chico State focuses on the legacy of murdered student, activist, Chico News & Review, Ken Smith

9/8/15:  FBI offering $5,000 reward in Marc Thompson caseAction News Now, News Staff

2/28/15:  Investigation into student’s homicide drags on, offers no answers, The Orion, Joseph Rogers

12/20/14:  Mother of slain Chico State student searching for justice; Butte Sheriff’s Office launches site for case, Oroville Mercury Register, Almendra Carpizo

12/15/14:  A Season of Homicides:  The Murder of Marc ThompsonSynthesis Weekly, Julie Garza-Withers

12/6/14:  Radio Interview about Marc Thompson’s Case featuring Shalari Drakes, Jonathan Henderson, Julie Garza-Withers & Alfred Jones, KPFA Radio (94.1 FM) the Saturday Morning Talkies with Guest Host Kevin Pina (Listen Now)

9/18/14:  Death of the ‘lone soldier’:  Murdered Chico State student and activist Marc Thompson remembered, Chico News & Review, Ken Smith

9/15/14:  Press Release- Local Human Rights Groups Express Deep Concern in Death of Marc Thompson, Butte County NAACP, MLK UNITY Group, Chico Peace and Justice Center, Human Relations Network, Beyond Violence Alliance, American Civil Liberties Union (PDF- read here)

9/12/14, Press Release- Appeal for Action in Marc Thompson’s Murder Case:  Seeking Community Support in Suspicious Death Investigation, StirFry Seminars & Consulting (PDF-read here)

9/11/14, Classmates remember student and activist Marc Thompson, Action News Now, Brian Johnson

9/11/14, Foul Play suggested in Death of Chico State Student, Action News Now

9/11/14, Investigation launched after body found in burnt vehicle in Butte County, Sacramento Bee, Cathy Locke

9/10/14, Body identified as Chico State Student, The Orion, David Mcvicker

9/10/14, Foul play suspected in death of Chico State student found in torched vehicle, Oroville Mercury Register, Almendra Carpizo


9/8/14, Burned body found in Yuba County, Action News Now

9/4/14, Body Found in Burned Car in Oroville, Fox 40, Ian McDonald

9/4/14, Burned body found inside vehicle in Butte County, KCRA, Sarah Heise

9/4/14, Butte Sheriff’s Office investigating dead body found in burning vehicle, Oroville Mercury Register, Almendra Carpizo

Updates and Announcements

FBI REWARD Offered ($5,000) and SECRET WITNESS REWARD Offered ($1,000):  For information that leads to the arrest and prosecution of the person, or persons, responsible for Marc Thompson’s death

Tips may be anonymous.  You are not required to provide your name or contact information.  Please only report information you know to be true and accurate about he crime.

Five Ways To Submit a Tip:

1) Call Secret Witness at (530) 532-6648

2) Email

3) Complete the Online Submission Form

4) Contact Butte County Sheriff’s Detective Chris D’Amato at (530) 538-7671


5)  Call the FBI at (800) CALL-FBI

For more information visit:


Marc Thompson Funeral & Tribute Schedule
Date:  Monday, October 6, 2014
Time:  11 am
Event:  Marc Thompson’s Funeral Service
Location:  Covenant Reformed Church, 1877 Hooker Oak Avenue, Chico, CA  95926

Please consider helping Marc Thompson’s family with their funeral and other legal costs via the  GoFundMe:  Marc Thompson Funeral Fund


Date:  Tuesday, October 7, 2014
Time:  6-8 pm
Event:  Tribute to Marc Thompson
Location:  PAC 144, Harlen Adams Theater, Cal State University Chico

Memories of Marc

Click here to view a “Tribute to Marc” Video by Ajakari Porter-Robinson

Be the Change- it’s tattooed on a scroll over my heart! AS Stories, Associated Students- CSU Chico

11/10/14:  If These Halls Could Talk,, Julie Garza-Withers

10/23/14:  Ugly bookends:  The author laments the murders of two promising young students, Chico News & Review, Jaime O’Neill

10/7/14:  Slain Chico State student remembered on campus, ChicoER News, Almendra Carpizo

9/29/14:  Heart On Fire:  The Murder of Marc Thompson, Synthesis Weekly, Emiliano Garcia-Sarnoff

9/19/14:  Al Jones speaks about his good friend and community social justice activist Marc Thompson whose short life was turned around by the mentorship of one professor toward a vision of social justice, KZFR 90.1 FM Radio (Listen Now)

9/18/14:  Death of the ‘lone soldier’:  Murdered Chico State student and activist Marc Thompson remembered,, Ken Smith

9/14/14, USA lost its future leader, Evrensel (Turkish newspaper), Ayse Taskiran (PDF- read English translation)

9/14/14, The troubled lenses of humanity, Evrensel (Turkish newspaper), Marc Thompson (PDF- read English translation)

9/12/14, Student remembered as humane leader, The Orion, David Mcvicker

9/13/14, My Memories of Slain Activist and Chico State Student Marc Thompson, Bill Mash

9/11/14, Classmates remember student and activist Marc Thompson, Action News Now, Brian Johnson

9/11/14, Don’t let our greatest resources be lost, Springfield News-Leader, Lyle Foster