Deputies Arrest Third Suspect Connected To El Sobrante Race-Motivated Slaying

MARTINEZ (CBS SF) — A third suspect connected to the alleged racially-motivated fatal shooting of a 28-year-old man in El Sobrante last month has been arrested, Contra Costa County sheriff’s officials said Saturday morning.

Sheriff’s officials had been seeking Daniel Ortega, 31, of Novato for weeks in connection with the Nov. 12 homicide and finally arrested him Friday at around 3:30 p.m., according to sheriff’s officials.

Ortega was then booked into the Martinez Detention Facility and is being held without bail, sheriff’s officials said.

Authorities have already arrested two other men in connection with the homicide.

Ray Simons, 32, of Hercules was arrested last week in Monterey County where he allegedly gave a false name during the booking process. His real identity was determined using fingerprints, and Contra Costa County homicide detectives were then notified of his arrest on Dec. 11.

Daniel Porter-Kelly, 31, was arrested on Nov. 16 and has been charged with one count of felony murder, one count of robbery and is facing a hate-crime enhancement for Sims’s killing. Porter-Kelly pleaded not guilty to the charges on Nov. 28 in Contra Costa County Superior Court, according to prosecutors.

The victim, 28-year-old Richmond resident William Sims, is African-American but prosecutors did not explain exactly why they felt Porter-Kelly should be charged with a hate crime, citing the ongoing investigation.

The fatal shooting occurred on Nov. 12. A sheriff’s sergeant was on patrol at around 2:10 a.m. in El Sobrante and discovered Sims lying in the roadway near Appian Way and Garden Lane and suffering from a gunshot wound. Sims was pronounced dead at the scene, sheriff’s officials said.

Detectives believe that Sims had been at the Capri Club at 4156 Appian Way when some kind of altercation occurred. Sims, a musician and retail worker, had no known gang ties and no criminal history, according to the sheriff’s office.

During the investigation, sheriff’s deputies arrested Ortega’s mother, 54-year-old Renee Brown of Novato, on suspicion of interfering with the investigation.

Late last month, Richmond Mayor Tom Butt released a statement about the allegedly racially motivated homicide saying he was “saddened and distressed.”

“As we work to strengthen our city by bringing people together, we must acknowledge heinous acts of hatred, hostility and violence that occur in our community and nation as a whole,” Butt said.

“Though Mr. Sims’ death occurred outside of Richmond city limits in the nearby unincorporated community of El Sobrante, his passing has left our community stunned and seeking justice for a young man who will be remembered as a talented musician and a kind-hearted member of our community,” he said in the statement.

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