Erika Gonzalez didn’t know what to put on her grandson’s birthday cake.
When Angel was younger, he liked “PAW Patrol”. But for his sixth birthday on May 21, he wanted something different.
“When we asked him, he said, ‘I want a Ferrari,'” Angel’s aunt Maria Velazquez said.
The Italian sports car manufacturer’s horse logo went on a Tres Leches cake.
Two weeks later, Angel and his mother, Yesli Velazquez Gonzalez, were shot dead at their home in Baldwin Park. The police found their bodies in the backyard.
The June 5 shooting was related to a domestic dispute, according to the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
Gonzalez, 23, was pronounced dead at the scene, while Angel later died at a hospital.
“He was my grandson, but he was like my son,” Erika Gonzalez said on the phone through sobs on Friday.
She believes that her daughter’s boyfriend, Rigoberto Covarrubias, killed her.
Covarrubias, 36, is wanted as a person interested in the homicide investigation and is believed to be armed and dangerous. Authorities believe he fled to Mexico.
According to Maria Velazquez, Yesli Velazquez Gonzalez and her son lived with Covarrubias for over a year.
Velazquez believes her sister was in an abusive relationship and sometimes showed up at family events with bruises or other injuries that she couldn’t fully explain.
Covarrubias was possessive and kept her and Angel on a short leash, according to Erika Gonzalez. He shared few details about himself or his own family in Texas. He was wary, jealous, and refused to visit Angel unless he was present, Gonzalez said.
“He kept her away from us. He didn’t want us to see them,” she said.
Angel, whom she often spoiled, was “the baby of the house,” Gonzalez said. “We just want there to be justice for them.”
Yesli Velazquez Gonzalez worked as an intervention assistant at Geddes Elementary School in Baldwin Park. She had a motherly warmth that drew students to her, said one teacher, Claudia Barba.
“She learned quickly. She just captured everything so quickly,” Barba said. “She was calm and patient, and she was so loving. The kids really responded so well to them.”
The two often went out for lunch and talked about their lives. Gonzalez shared few details about Covarrubias, instead talking about her son and sharing pictures of him smiling.
Maria Velazquez said her nephew and sister are inseparable.
“They were always together and always had a smile on their face,” she said. “You were loved by everyone.”
https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2022-06-10/family-of-mother-and-son-killed-in-baldwin-park-speaks-out Family of mother and 6-year-old killed in Baldwin Park speaks out