LOS ANGELES (CNS) - The Los Angeles City Council signed off today on a $50,000 reward for information leading to the conviction of whoever is responsible for the killing of Joseph Gatto, the 78-year-old father of Assemblyman Mike Gatto.

The emergency reward motion, introduced by council members Tom LaBonge, Mitch O'Farrell and Joe Buscaino, was approved 12-0.

The assemblyman, at a news conference with Police Chief Charlie Beck and Mayor Eric Garcetti, said his father “gave so much to the community, and now we must turn to the community for help in solving his murder.”

“If you know something, my family begs you to come forward,” Gatto said. “My dad was a beloved father, a grandfather and teacher. He didn't deserve to go out like this.”

Joseph Gatto, a former teacher, was found shot to death Nov. 13 in his home in the 2800 block of

Bright Lane
in SilverLake.

Authorities “will not rest until we bring his killer to justice,” said Garcetti, who held up a freshly signed copy of the reward-offer motion approved by council a few hours before.

The senior Gatto died of a single gunshot wound and was discovered 24 hours after he was shot, Beck said.

He added that detectives were still searching for a “person of interest,” described as a man 18 to 25 years old, who was involved in a car

burglary and an assault with a deadly weapon on Nov. 12, the same day Gatto was killed.

Beck said the man was not yet a “suspect,” but a “person of interest.”

“We would like to find out about any knowledge he might have or what any other individual might have regarding Mr. Gatto's death,” he said.

Witnesses described the man as 5 feet 9 inches tall, weighing around 180 pounds. He wore a multi-colored hooded sweatshirt and tan pants, a tan backpack and carried a handgun.

Police said he threatened witnesses with death when he was caught breaking into a vehicle in the 2300 block of

Moreno Drive
on Nov. 12.

When the first of two witnesses confronted the him, he pointed a gun and threatened to kill her. When another witness confronted the him, he repeated the threat. He then fled on foot down public stairs on

Tesla Avenue

Anyone with information about the case was asked to call Los Angeles police detectives Barry Telis or Chris Gable at (213) 486-6890 or the LAPD's hotline at (877) 527-3247.