SAN DIEGO – Nearly three years to the day after 31-year-old Armando Torres Jr. was shot to death at a local sports facility, his father gave an emotional plea Thursday for tips into the unsolved murder.
Armando Torres Sr. said he watching the news on the night of May 29, 2019, when he learned of a deadly shooting at the Willie Henderson Sports Complex in San Diego’s Mountain View neighborhood. Soon thereafter, he remembers getting the call that changed his family’s life forever.
“It was my son,” he says in the video while holding his young granddaughter in his arms. “I went over there. I seen what I saw on the news. It was him. My family was there and I was shocked.”
He then was filled with agony about his next move: How would he tell his son’s mother about what he had just learned?
“I didn’t know what to say so I went to her house and knocked on the door to give her the bad news,” he said, fighting back tears. “I took her to the scene. His body was still laying there with a yellow tarp.”
Torres Jr. suffered traumatic gunshot wounds to his upper body, authorities said. San Diego police Lt. Matt Dobbs noted the shooting happened in a crowded park with both soccer players and spectators present. He was not believed to have been involved in the game.
He was pronounced dead at the scene despite the CPR efforts of officers and San Diego Fire-Rescue crews.
At the time, the suspects were described by police as three Hispanic men aged between their teens and 20s who were wearing hooded sweatshirts. No arrests were ever made.
The video, released by San Diego County Crime Stoppers, is the latest bid to help solve the case with Torres Sr. saying the family is asking for any assistance to learn what happened that night.
“There was a soccer game going on and there were a lot of people,” he said. “We’d like you people to let us know you saw the thing, to call and help us out and help my granddaughter.”
Holding up a silver necklace, Torres Sr. said, “This is all we have left, the ashes.”
“We’ll never be able to hug him,” he said, gesturing to his granddaughter. “She’ll never be able to hug her dad.”
A $1,000 reward has been offered by Crime Stoppers for information leading to an arrest, the agency said.
Those with information to share with investigators were asked to call the San Diego police Homicide Unit at 619-531-2293. Tips also can be submitted anonymously by calling Crime Stoppers at 888-580-8477 or by visiting sdcrimestoppers.org.