RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Newly released search warrants reveal the final moments of Wake County deputy Ned Byrd’s life before he was fatally shot on August 11.
CBS 17 obtained search warrants for murder suspects Alder Alfonso Marin-Sotelo, 26, and Arturo Marin-Sotelo, 29.
According to the search warrant, deputy Byrd was on his way to a Wake County Law Enforcement Training Center to conduct K9 training on the night of Aug. 11. Surveillance video from a Marathon gas station on Battle Bridge and Auburn Knightdale roads showed a pickup truck backing up against a fence at 11:03 p.m.
At 1:06 a.m. the next morning, Byrd was found deceased with multiple gunshot wounds—including one to the back of his head—outside of his parked patrol vehicle on the side of Battle Bridge Road in the grass. A 9 mm handgun was used in Byrd’s murder.
A dash camera from Byrd’s vehicle showed him pulling up past the pickup truck and then stopping. He was then seen backing up in the road toward the suspect vehicle. At 11:07 p.m., Byrd angled his vehicle towards the suspect vehicle and exited to approach the pickup truck.
Approximately 13 seconds later at 11:08 p.m., “three rapid gun fire shots were heard with an additional three shots fired,” according to warrant documents. A minute and a half later at 11:09 p.m., the suspect vehicle was seen crossing in front of Byrd’s vehicle and turning onto Battle Bridge Road.
Deputy Byrd’s dash camera recorded the scene for two hours and five vehicles were seen passing the area during that time, the warrants detailed.
One of the warrants said there was probable cause to search and seize both brothers’ cell phones. The warrant said that investigators were able to request cellular tower data for cell phone providers that were in the area the night of the murder.
After analyzing cell phone data, investigators found two suspect phone numbers that were present in the area of the crime scene at the time of the murder. The warrant revealed the devices were in communication with one another immediately after the crime.
On Aug. 14, investigators requested historical and phone records associated with the suspects’ phones. According to the search warrant, a 30-day review was conducted for both cell phones and showed that outside of two calls that occurred between the brothers on July 25, the only other communication took place between 4:45 p.m. on Aug. 11 and the afternoon of Aug. 12. The search warrant further revealed that within a 24-hour period, the phones were in contact over 40 times.
Further cell phone records also show Arturo’s cell phone moved between the crime scene vicinity and his residence in Raleigh.
On Aug. 16, surveillance units observed both suspects leaving the Wake County area. The warrant reveals that there was no cellular activity between the brothers 24 hours prior. However, surveillance video shows the brothers talking on and using a cellular device. This led investigators to believe the brothers obtained a new cell phone.
Law enforcement believed the unknown cell phone belonged to Alder. Ongoing cellular location data showed the cell phone was originally in Winston-Salem before travelling back to Raleigh Aug. 14. While the phone was travelling back to Raleigh, it was powered off.
On Aug. 16, a gold Cadillac Escalade driven by Alder was seen picking up a child and a woman at a residence in Garner. The vehicle then drove to Winston-Salem for inspection and a DMV location for a new license plate. The woman then drove the vehicle back to Winston-Salem.
The brothers were then seen getting into separate vehicles the same day and driving to two different gas stations. After getting gas, the brothers traveled to Interstate 40 towards western North Carolina. Law enforcement officers believed the two were fleeing the area to avoid being caught.
Officers later stopped the brothers for traffic stops regarding federal offenses in Morganton, North Carolina. According to the search warrant, Alder was driving the Cadillac and Arturo was driving the Chevrolet Tahoe. The brothers were later detained and questioned in Burke County.
The same day, investigators questioned the female and she consented to a search at a residence in Winston-Salem. While investigators were in route to the residence, they found Rolando Marin-Sotelo entering the residence. He was seen leaving the residence with what investigators believed to be boxes of ammunition.
Investigators conducted a traffic stop and found Rolando with marijuana, 9mm ammunition and $5,000. Rolando later revealed that on Aug. 16, that he would give Arturo $300 if he sold a Chevrolet Colorado. Images released by the Wake County Sheriff’s Office on Aug. 15 showed images of a Chevrolet Colorado.
The vehicle was sold by Alder to an acquaintance on Aug. 16.
The search warrant for the cell phones were executed Aug. 17.
The second search warrant obtained a DNA sample from Alder. The warrant says that there was probable cause to obtain blood, saliva and hair samples for DNA evidence at the crime scene.
The search warrant was executed Aug. 18.
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.