Group of #teenagers #ambushed, #killed 18-year-old over #stolen #backpack, #investigators say

SAN ANTONIO – An 18-year-old is dead after a confrontation over a stolen backpack erupted in a barrage of one-sided gunfire, arrest affidavits for four people charged in the murder of Raymond Silva revealed.

Milo Mendez, 17, David Samora, 18, Damien Walker, 19, and Samuel Ayala, 17, are all charged with a murder investigators say occurred after Ayala had his backpack stolen last week.

Ayala, who was arrested and charged with murder on the day of the fatal shooting, told investigators someone stole his backpack from him as he was walking home last week and that the individual who robbed him threatened him with a gun and pistol whipped him.

Ayala said the person who stole the backpack ran toward a mobile home in the Valley Ridge Mobile Home Park, and that he assumed the person who stole his backpack lived in the mobile home since it appeared the person entered the home. Ayala also said he didn’t call police about his stolen backpack because he was wanted on two outstanding warrants.

Ayala told investigators he later told two of his friends, Samora and Mendez, about what happened to him and that his two friends — and another individual who is not charged — planned on confronting the people in the mobile home to get Ayala’s backpack back.

Ayala told investigators Samora and Mendez met at his home on Friday before they walked to the mobile home where they thought the robber lived. When they got to the home, he said they confronted Silva about the stolen backpack and that Samora and Mendez both had guns pointed at Silva and another individual Silva was with. Ayala made a second reference to the individual who has not been charged, this time saying that the individual participated in the killing and was lying on the ground with a rifle pointed at Silva.

Ayala said Silva swung at Samora and that’s when shots were fired. He said he saw Samora shoot Silva and that they all ran in separate directions after the shooting.

Police apprehended Ayala on the same day of the shooting after someone recognized him as living a few houses down from where the shooting happened.

Police picked up Mendez on a minor violation on Feb. 10, according to an affidavit, and the homicide detective investigating Silva’s death requested that Mendez be taken to the homicide office for questioning. But, when investigators tried to talk to Mendez, he requested an attorney.

A witness who knows Mendez, however, told police Mendez was with Ayala, Samora and Walker on the night of the shooting.

Ayala, according to arrest documents, did not mention Walker during his interview with investigators. Ayala instead assigned Walker’s alleged role in the shooting to the individual who has not been charged.

The witness said they were told the four were headed to Ayala’s house to beat someone up for robbing Ayala. The individual said that they didn’t see the four men again until the day after the shooting when Mendez and Samora told them they shot someone 17 times.

The witness told investigators Mendez and Samora borrowed the guns from Walker’s brother and that Walker was armed with a rifle during the shooting.

Investigators interviewed Walker and Samora around 1 a.m. Sunday, an affidavit said, and during the interview, Walker told authorities he was armed with a rifle and shot twice.

All four men are charged with murdering Silva.

When told the shooting might have been as a result of a stolen backpack, Silva’s girlfriend, Catherine McHugh, flatly denied the idea that he would have stolen from someone.

Silva’s sister Michelle Pena echoed McHugh’s view, saying her brother always worked for his own things.

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