Why Did You Kill Me

“Why Did You Kill Me?”: Catfish the Killer

The American murder documentary Why Did You Kill Me? was released on Netflix on Apr. 14, 2021. It was filmed, directed and produced by Fredrick Monk. The true crime documentary delves into the murder of 24-year-old Crystal Theobald which occurred on Feb. 24, 2006 in Riverside, California involving a fatal gun shot wound. The investigation by police and Theobald’s family took place for more than a decade until the final suspect, Julio Heredia was arrested in 2016 for Theobald’s gang-related death. 

The film however, mainly focuses on Belinda Lane, Crystal’s mother, and her efforts to uncover her daughter’s murderer. After receiving a tip that the local 5150 gang was involved the murder, Theobald’s cousin Jaimie McIntyre, created a fake Myspace account to scout for information. From there, she created another account with Theobald’s photo under the alias “Angel,” which Lane eventually took over. Through the fake MySpace account, Lane developed a relationship with one of the 5150 gang members, William “Jokes” Sotelo, who just so happened to own a white Ford Expedition, which was the car of Theobald’s murderer. However, the police did not rule this as sufficient evidence and released Sotelo after interrogation. 

Lane did not back down. Instead, she invited Sotelo and other 5150 gang members to an “end of the world party” on 06/06/06. Her intentions were to shoot the members of the gang at the party, but she did not follow through with the plan. The day before the party, she revealed her intentions to Sotelo through a fake MySpace message reading, “Why did you kill me?” Sotelo did not show up to the party and went off the grid. Lane was able to hand her fake MySpace over to the police as evidence incriminating Sotelo. 

A year after the death of Theobald, the police tracked down Heredia for which he received a sentence of life in prison without the possibility of parole. After his disappearance, no one could find Sotelo for a decade. However, after a Facebook tip in 2014 surfaced, it was revealed that Sotelo was in Central Mexico. 

Personally, this documentary was indicative of what extent a person in pain or experiencing loss would go to in order for justice to be served. Crystal’s mother did not care who she hurt or what she had to do in order to get justice for her daughter. She was set on risking everything and even herself. Though justice was served, Belinda Lane sacrificed her quality of life and mental state in order to bring peace to her daughters death. This is a good documentary for those into true crime and delving into a murder, and it reveals lessons about making sacrifices and how sometimes one mistake can lead to a much larger conflict.

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