Two charged with murder of John Soyka; third man also indicted

J.R. Oppenheim
November 21, 2017 06:37 PM

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – A grand jury indicted three people in connection with a man’s kidnapping and murder over the summer.


Chase Smotherman and Mariah Ferry each face six charges for their involvement in John Soyka’s death this past August, Bernalillo County District Attorney’s Office spokesperson Michael Patrick said. Investigators discovered Soyka’s body near Rio Puerco in September.

Both Smotherman and Ferry were charged with first-degree murder charges, first-degree kidnapping, tampering with evidence. They were also charged with conspiracy on those three counts.

The third person, Mitchell Overhand, was charged with tampering with evidence and conspiracy.

Smotherman, Overhand and Ferry have previous charges for another kidnapping. Patrick said a judge granted pretrial detention for the two men, but Ferry was released to a third party with GPS monitoring.

Police initially arrested Overhand for allegedly torturing a victim. That person told officers he was shown images of his friend’s mutilated body. Police arrested Ferry shortly after.

Investigators got a break in their search for Soyka when a SWAT situation led them to Jose Torrez. He reportedly told police Soyka had been beaten and possibly dismembered.

Soyka was missing for more than a month when police found his remains, and the case became a homicide investigation.

Patrick said the district attorney’s office will seek pretrial detention for Ferry on these new charges.

KOB’s Joy Wang will have more on this story on KOB Eyewitness News 4 at 6.


J.R. Oppenheim

Copyright 2017 KOB-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved


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