FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE)- A man accused of being an accessory to murder was released in Fresno just seven hours after he was booked into the Fresno County Jail in October.
Lawrence Madrid, 20, is accused of mutilating the body of 20-year-old Sergio Bonboster.
Officials confirmed Madrid was released due to COVID-19 concerns, but this week the judge ordered him back behind bars and now the victim’s family is calling for justice.
“It is disgusting,” said Bonboster’s biological mother Margaret Bakle. “The system is a disgrace that they would allow an individual who committed such a horrific crime to walk since October.”
Frequently the family of Bonboster gathers at the canal where his body was found. A wood cross etched with his name and covered in flowers as a reminder of their loved one.
“My heart, my whole world fell apart, my heart was broken and I had to tell my kids that they are never going to see their brother again,” said Bakle.
On Oct. 12, the Fresno Police Department found parts of Bonboster’s body in the empty canal near Hughes and Emerson avenues.
Later that month, Fresno Police arrested Bonboster’s roommate, 20-year-old Lawrence Madrid, and his 17-year-old girlfriend.
The girlfriend is in the Juvenile Justice Center and is facing murder charges.
Madrid was booked into the Fresno County Jail and is facing charges of accessory to murder and mutilation of human remains.
“To learn how it happened and why it happened has destroyed us as a family,” said the victim’s brother Nathaniel Rodriguez.
Boncoster’s brother, Nathaniel Rodriguez, said investigations told the family that the 17-year-old stabbed Bonboster 19 times before Madrid then cut up the body and disposed of some of it in the canal along with the rest in a dumpster.
Despite the allegations against him, Madrid was released seven hours after he was booked due to $0 bail and COVID-19 concerns.
“The fact that they left a dangerous individual on the streets,” said Rodriguez. “To me, that is a failure.”
According to the Police Department, under California law, accessory is a wobbler charge. For example, a police spokesperson said an accessory to murder and accessory to robbery charge would be classified under the same charge.
When Madrid was seen back in court this week, the District Attorney’s shared concerns about his release. The judge agreed and he was re-booked under the same charges, but this time his bail was set at $50,000.
The Fresno County Sheriff’s Office said Madrid is not eligible for $0 bail a second time. Madrid will be back in court at the end of the month.