Victor Solis, 53, was arrested at his Lancaster home without incident around 9 a.m. Thursday. FBI officials say he allegedly helped his son, 27-year-old Henry Solis, cross the border to Juarez, Mexico to avoid prosecution and then lied about it.
Investigators believe Henry Solis got into a fistfight with 23-year-old Salome Rodriguez, Jr. that escalated into a fatal shooting in the area of Third and Main streets in Pomona on March 13. Rodriguez was found with gunshot wounds to the lower torso and later died.
Soon after the alleged murder, Henry Solis called his father at his Lancaster home. Victor Solis then left home and was found the next day at a family member's home in El Paso, Texas, according to an affidavit in a federal criminal complaint.
Victor Solis initially told FBI agents that he dropped his son off at a bus station in El Paso and did not have any information on his whereabouts, according to court documents.
He told agents he traveled alone to Mexico on March 14, "... when in truth and in fact the defendant traveled to Mexico with his son on March 14, 2015, and the defendant's false statement was an attempt to conceal his son's whereabouts from law enforcement," according to a criminal complaint filed in U.S. District Court in El Paso.
The defendant allegedly helped his son cross the United States-Mexico border crossing at El Paso, Texas into Juarez, Mexico. Surveillance video obtained from the border crossing shows Henry and Victor Solis both crossing the border at about 5:40 a.m. on March 14.
Victor Solis, who was found with $5,000 in cash, appeared in federal court Thursday afternoon in downtown Los Angeles. A judge deemed him as a flight risk and ordered him to be held without bail. He agreed to be transferred to Texas to face the charge.
On Thursday, Rodriguez was laid to rest at St. Alphonsus Catholic Church in East Los Angeles.
"The parents and the grandparents and the siblings are crying," said attorney Gloria Allred, who is representing the Rodriguez family. "They're heartbroken, they're devastated, but they're remembering their loved one today. He was a very good young man."
If convicted, Victor Solis faces up to five years in prison.
His son, Henry Solis, remains on the run. The FBI is offering a $25,000 reward for information leading to his arrest. Anyone with information on his whereabouts was urged to contact the FBI tip line at (888) 226-8443.