Murder charge dropped against man in exchange for testimony about fatal stabbing

Edwin Rios, 24, sentenced to 2 years of house arrest

By Amanda Batchelor - Senior Digital Editor, Michael Seiden - Reporter

MIAMI - A murder charge was dropped Thursday against Edwin Rios, 24, in exchange for his testimony about a stabbing outside a Halloween party that left one man dead and another injured.

Alejandro Tapia, 23, Sebastian Zorrilla, 20, and Andres Feo, 24, were also arrested in the case and are charged with second-degree murder and attempted second-degree murder. 

The murder and attempted murder charges against Rios were downgraded Thursday to two counts of felony battery and he was sentenced to two years of house arrest.

Rios will then serve eight years of probation. 

A Miami-Dade County judge warned Rios that he will be sent back to jail for 90 years if he violates any of the terms of his release.

As part of the deal, Rios must fully cooperate with the state and testify against all defendants in the case. He is not allowed to have contact with the defendants or the surviving victim or the victims' family. 

But Rios had to face the victims' family in court Thursday as they called him a "scumbag" and a "parasite."

"You have shattered my life beyond description. I can never forgive you," the victims' mother, Amparo Restrepo, said. 

According to an arrest report, Rios was part of a group of men who attacked two brothers as they were leaving a Halloween party early Oct. 21 at a home on Southwest 147th Street.  

Christopher Restrepo said he was stabbed in the arm as they were ambushed. His brother, Alex Restrepo, 33, was stabbed in the back and torso and left to die.

"You and the other three. They stabbed my son in the back! In the back! Maybe he could've handled all you four if you didn't have a weapon," Amparo Restrepo said. 

Witnesses said the incident started as a verbal altercation inside the home and the hosts asked those involved to leave. Witnesses said the argument, involving about six people, escalated in the street. 

Alex Restrepo died at Jackson South Community Hospital. He was a graduate of the University of Florida and was an employee at the Turkey Point Nuclear Generating Station. 

It's unclear whether more people were involved in the attack.

Rios apologized to Alex Restrepo's family during Thursday's hearing.

"I'm sorry. I wish it never would have happened," he said. "I didn't know it was going to happen. It shouldn't have happened." 

Anyone with further information about the attack is asked to call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-TIPS. 

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