Detectives sought today to determine if the slaying of a man at his North County transmission repair shop over the weekend was linked to a year-old gang double murder for which his son is facing trial.
Ruben Bodden, 59, was found by his wife at his business in the 1200 block of North Santa Fe Avenue in Vista shortly before 12:30 p.m. Sunday, according to sheriff’s Lt. Glenn Giannantonio, who described the fatality as a homicide but disclosed no suspected cause of death.
Investigators were looking into whether the killing was related to a shooting that left two teenagers dead at Libby Lake Park in Oceanside last March, according to the lieutenant.
Bodden’s son, Brian Maricio Bodden, 19, was one of five suspects arrested on suspicion of gunning down Edgar Sanchez, 15, and Melanie Virgen, 13. Two other youths suffered non-fatal wounds in the assault.
Brian Bodden was jailed on unrelated charges 10 days after the killings, then was rebooked on murder and attempted-murder counts in August. The defendant, who is being held in lieu of $5.25 million bail, is scheduled to appear in court for a pretrial hearing on April 7.
Four other suspects — Kevin Brizuela, 17, Santo Diaz, 19, Martin Melendrez, 21, and Michael Zurita, 19 — also were arrested within weeks of the killings. A prosecutor alleged during their arraignments that they were all members of the same gang and carried out the retaliatory shooting in territory claimed by rivals.
The double killing occurred near a makeshift memorial for a teenage couple gunned down at the park by suspected gang members nearly two years earlier.
–City News Service.