Where is William ‘Jokes’ Sotelo from Netflix’s Why Did You Kill Me documentary now?

Crystal Theobald’s mother tracked him down on MySpace

The 2006 death of Crystal Theobald is now being explored in a new Netflix true crime documentary called Why Did You Kill Me? In the 83-minute film we see how Crystal’s mother, Belinda Lane, took to MySpace to hunt down those who she believed were responsible. 10 years after the murder, the final suspect was caught – William Sotelo.

Sotelo was 17 at the time of Crystal’s death, and a member of local Riverside gang, the 5150. William Sotelo was the owner of the white Ford Expedition which pulled up by the car Crystal was being driven in. She was in the car with her boyfriend and her brother, Justin Theobald. Crystal’s boyfriend was driving, and her mother, Belinda Lane, was in another car just ahead of them.

The car which Crystal was in was shot at multiple times by someone who got out of a white SUV. Crystal had been shot in the head and was rushed to hospital. She died two days later. Sotelo was driving the SUV at the time.

After the incident, Belinda Lane and Crystal’s cousin Jaimie made fake MySpace profiles to reach out to those who they thought were involved. One of these was Sotelo, and according to the Netflix documentary, he told “Angel” (the MySpace profile which was made with Crystal’s picture) that he loved her, and later disclosed that he owned a white Ford Expedition. This information was passed onto police, and Sotelo became a suspect in the case.

William 'Jokes' Sotelo, Why Did You Kill Me, Netflix, MySpace, profile, account

His MySpace profile, via Netflix

Where is William ‘Jokes’ Sotelo now?

After Crystal’s murder, William Sotelo was the hardest of the suspects to track down. He had gone off grid after Crystal’s mother, Belinda, messaged him asking about his involvement, via MySpace.

Finally in 2016, 10 years after the murder, William Sotelo was tracked down in Mexico, where he was living with a wife and four children and working as a chilli farmer. Crystal’s mother had received a tip on Facebook about his whereabouts, and he was the last of all suspects to be brought to justice.

According to a Riverside Police update in 2016, on May 6th of that year, Mexican authorities captured William Sotelo in central Mexico, and delivered him to the United States the next day. Riverside police detectives interviewed Sotelo and had him put straight into prison, facing multiple charges in connection with the assault and murder.

William Sotelo, Why Did You Kill Me, Netflix, mugshot, arrest

via Netflix

Riverside Police Detective Rick Wheeler said at the time: “We are happy to finally close the last chapter on this case, and bring William Sotelo to justice after ten years of searching for him. I appreciate the work of the Riverside Police officers and IRAT team, FBI, and Mexican authorities who have brought him back to Riverside to answer for what he has done.”

Just as his case was about to go to trial, Sotelo admitted a single count of voluntary manslaughter. In exchange for his admission, prosecutors dropped charges of murder, attempted murder and shooting at an occupied vehicle. In 2020, he was sentenced to 22 years.

William Sotelo is 33-years-old now, and being held at Centinela State Prison, California. According to his prison records, he was admitted to that prison on January 28th 2020, and is eligible for parole in May 2030. He is eligible for a parole suitability hearing as a youth offender because he committed his offence while under the age of 26. According to his records, Sotelo could have his first consultation with the parole board in May 2025. As he was in custody from 2016 to 2020 awaiting trial, Sotelo will receive around four years credit in time already served on his sentence.

Life is anything but cosy for the convict now, as Centinela State Prison has a capacity of just over 2,300 inmates, but on last review was housing over 3,000 people. 

Why Did You Kill Me? is available on Netflix now. For all the latest Netflix news, quizzes, drops and memes like The Holy Church of Netflix on Facebook. 

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