Man, son charged in South Boston killing

A father wielding a metal baton and his 16-year-old son, armed with a knife, combined forces in a brutal attack in South Boston Sunday that ended the life of a 29-year-old man, a killing that was captured by surveillance cameras, officials said.

The teenager, Angel R. Sanchez, was arraigned Monday in South Boston Municipal Court on a charge of murder and was ordered held without bail by Municipal Court Judge Michael Bolden after a not-guilty plea was entered on his behalf. Elias Sanchez, 43, was arraigned in a Boston hospital room after being treated for injuries from the assault.

Sanchez and his son are accused of attacking Edwin Santos Sunday around 5 p.m. in front of Bell’s Market on Dorchester Street as Santos was standing with his girlfriend. Surveillance video shows no signs of provocation by Santos or his girlfriend, officials said.


Although Angel Sanchez is a juvenile, his case was open to the public because he is charged with murder.

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About 10 relatives of Santos were in court for the arraignment, and some broke down in tears when Assistant Suffolk District Attorney Mark D. Zanini said one of Santos’s injuries was a gaping wound on his head.

Luis Agosto, who identified himself as Santos’s brother, said outside court that the death has shocked his family. “He was a good guy,’’ he said of Santos. “He was a good father.’’

Agosto added, “It’s a real shame what happened to him.”

During Angel Sanchez’s arraignment, Zanini said that after the father and son assaulted Santos, they were joined by a third man who helped stab, pummel, and beat Santos.


Zanini said the trio halted the violence only because they had grown weary of brutalizing Santos, who rushed into Bell’s Market after his attackers fled and collapsed on the floor. Santos was pronounced dead at Boston Medical Center. Prosecutors said he died of multiple blunt trauma and stab wounds.

“The three assailants simply tired of the attack,’’ Zanini said.

Zanini said in court the victim and his alleged attackers knew each other; the third man is being sought by Boston police. A motive is under investigation.

Zanini said the surveillance video shows Santos and his girlfriend in front of the store when the elder Sanchez arrived, pulled out a collapsible baton, and beat Santos with it, pursuing the victim as he repeatedly tried to back away.

Moments into the attack by the elder Sanchez, his 16-year-old son joined the attack and flipped an arm upward in what appeared to be the action of someone trying to open a folding knife, Zanini said. The younger Sanchez then stabbed and slashed at Santos, the prosecutor said.


Zanini said the girlfriend tried to protect the victim, first by trying to pull the two men away from Santos, and then by arming herself with a knife. During the melee, the elder Sanchez received stab wounds that required hospitalization; he was arraigned in his room at Boston Medical Center Monday night. Elias Sanchez was ordered held without bail.

Zanini said the trio halted the violence only because they had grown weary of brutalizing Santos, who rushed into Bell Market and collapsed.

In court, the younger Sanchez’s defense lawyer, J.W. Carney Jr., said his client was a Boston public schools high school student with no prior contact with the court system until he was arrested with his father at their home on East Ninth Street in South Boston Sunday.

Zanini said father and son gave statements to police following their arrest; a knife was also recovered in the home.

John R. Ellement can be reached at ellement@
. Follow him on Twitter @JREbosglobe.