‘We lost our ray of sunshine’: Murder victim’s family wants stronger laws

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Sydney Wilson made a permanent mark on the world.

“She was very artistic,” said Deidra Wilson, Sydney Wilson’s mom. “Loved to color, draw, anything she could get her hands on to do. Make jewelry. She did it all.”

Her family says someone stole her car last Saturday. By Monday night, she tracked it to the Smith’s gas station near Central and Coors, with a group of teenagers inside.

“She thought ‘Oh, they’re just a bunch of teenagers. I’m going to just get out and scare them off,’ explained Crystal Miller, Sydney Wilson’s sister. “’And I’m going to have my car back,’ you know, and that’s just her train of thought. That’s just who she was.”

When Wilson approached the car, investigators say one of the teens in the group shot and killed her. APD identified the suspect as 13-year-old Marcos Barela.

“I still haven’t wrapped my head around it,” said Deidra Wilson.

“Unspeakable. Very unspeakable,” said Donald Wilson, Sydney’s dad. “Something that shouldn’t ever have happened. I would never want anything like that to happen to hear anybody’s kids. I mean, it’s just an unrealistic part of your life that you would never want to go through.”         

Now this family says they want to lead the fight for better, stronger laws surrounding teen violence.

“The violence with these kids and these kids being able to get a hold of a handgun to begin with,” said Miller. “It’s too much already, it is too much already. Something needs to be done. And the only way it’s going to happen is that everybody in the community, everybody in this world gets together and puts their foot down and puts a stop to it. And that’s what needs to happen,” she said.

Sydney Wilson’s family is inviting the public, and anyone who wants to see change in the community, to a vigil Friday, Aug. 4 at 7:30 p.m. at the Smith’s gas station near Central and Coors.