Fresno man accused of cutting roommate’s body in half was out of jail on COVID rule

·2 min read

New, grisly details emerged regarding the stabbing death of Sergio Bonboster, whose mutilated body was found in an empty northwest Fresno canal in October.

Bonboster, 20, was reported missing by his family on Oct. 7. Five days later, his body was found in a dry canal near Hughes and Emerson avenues, covered in a tarp.

Detectives arrested Bonboster’s roommate Lawrence Madrid, 20, and Madrid’s 17-year-old girlfriend.

Police believe the teenager intervened during a fight between the men and stabbed Bonboster multiple times. Smith said Bonboster was stabbed in the neck, back and chest a total of 19 times.

The teenager is charged with murder. Madrid is charged with being an accessory to murder and mutilation of human remains.

During his arraignment Monday, prosecutor Elana Smith alleged Madrid tried to cover up the murder and dispose of the body by cutting it in half and stashing it in different places.

“One place was under a nearby bridge and he hid another part in a dumpster at the apartment,” Smith told Judge Leanne Le Mon.

Smith pushed for Madrid, who was released from the Fresno County Jail because of COVID-19 precautions, to be placed back in custody.

“Based on the seriousness of this offense we have concerns about his custody status,” Smith said. “And concerns about public safety.”

Le Mon agreed and ordered Madrid, who pleaded not guilty to the charges, to be placed back in jail with bail set at $50,000. Family members of Bonboster who were present in the courtroom nodded with approval.

His sister, Jazmine Bonboster, said she was “completely shocked and heartbroken” at the loss of her brother.

“He liked living his life like any other 20-year-old,” she said. “Family and friends were big to him and he loved being an uncle.”

The teenage murder suspect is being housed at the Juvenile Justice Center. Smith said the district attorney’s office has filed a motion to have the teenager tried as an adult. That motion is pending.

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