Punk Rock Band’s Road Crew Member Slain

A Venice man who once served on the road crew for the defunct punk rock band Black Flag was shot to death Thursday by robbers as he walked home from a neighborhood grocery store, police said.

Joe Cole, 30, and his roommate were returning from the Boys Market on Lincoln Boulevard at 12:40 a.m. when they were robbed of about $40 by two gunmen, said Lt. Ross Moen. The victims were then ordered to return to their house about 1 1/2 blocks away, where one of the suspects fired a single shot at Cole and fled, Moen said.

Cole, the son of TV actor Dennis Cole, was a “roadie” for Black Flag during the critically acclaimed group’s final U.S. tour in 1986. David Crouch, manager of Rhino Records in Westwood, described Cole as a popular figure in the alternative music scene who had been a “confidant and right-hand man” to the musicians in Black Flag.