Day 3 of Soto-Bonilla murder trial: MS-13 gang member testifies for the prosecution


BEDFORD COUNTY, Va. (WFXR) — On Friday, another self-identified member of MS-13 and former associate of Kevin Soto-Bonilla testified against Soto-Bonilla, who is on trial for his role in the 2017 killing of 17-year-old Raymond Wood, of Lynchburg. 

The witness testified that he drove with Soto-Bonilla and other MS-13 members from Maryland to Wood’s home in Lynchburg, though he said he did not know where they were going or what they were going to do. 

The witness said before Wood’s death, the group stopped by another member’s apartment, where they passed around a knife for everyone to touch. The witness testified that a high-ranking member of MS-13 said about the knife, “This is what we’re going to make soup with,” which the witness explained was a phrase that means to kill someone.

The witness testified that when they arrived to Wood’s home, two MS-13 members assaulted Wood, and Soto-Bonilla grabbed Wood by the feet and pulled him into the car before the group drove off.

The witness said Wood was screaming for help and crying out for his mother, struggling throughout most of the seven or eight minute drive.

He said another member was holding Wood around his chest, and while the witness did not know how or why Wood stopped struggling, he remembered hearing the member holding Wood say, “He finally shut up.”

“I was terrified. I had never gone through anything like this,” the witness said. 

The drive only lasted a few minutes before the witness said his fellow gang members pulled Wood out of the car and took turns assaulting him.

The witness said a high-ranking MS-13 member called him over to take part in the attack, but the witness testified he saw a car coming, and the MS-13 members ran off.

The witness said of his associates, “It was like they didn’t care what they were doing.”

Investigators also testified on Friday, showing posts from Soto-Bonilla’s Facebook account they say suggest an affiliation with MS-13.

The trial wrapped up for the day before the defense could question the witness. Trial resumes Monday morning at 9am.


Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

News tips

Do you have a news tip or breaking news to share with WFXR?  Submit your tip here.

Latest News

More News

News Tip Form