Hearing starts for three men accused of murdering Visalia teen during drug deal

In the nine months since their son's death, Tiffanie and Terry Wade say life has not been easy.

They're still dealing with the loss, and at the same time, closely following the cases of each person connected to their son's murder, including two minors. Five people were arrested in all.

"We go to three courtrooms a month, every month," Tiffanie Wade said.

Many members of Terry Wade III's family came to court on Thursday, for the first day of testimony in the preliminary hearing of Noah fox, Kalvin Solis, and Jose Cortez, all charged with murder and conspiracy for Wade's death in May of last year.

That Sunday afternoon, Wade drove to Woodland Park in Visalia with his girlfriend. Wade was to sell three ounces of marijuana to Fox, but when Fox showed up late, Wade's girlfriend said three other people were with him, and that was concerning.

Eventually, she said Fox got in the backseat of their car.

"As soon as he entered, he never said anything and he pointed the gun and cocked it in our face and he left the door open," she said.

Wade then hit the gas and his girlfriend jumped in the backseat with Fox.

"I was fighting him and I was asking him to get out and he said, 'If you stop the car, I won't shoot.' And Terry said, "Kick him out babe,' and soon as he said that, he shot him, and then we crashed."

"I checked for breathing," said Visalia Police Officer Samantha Valenzuela. "He was not breathing and also I did not locate a pulse." By the time the first officer arrived on the scene, the suspects were gone.

And Wade's girlfriend was hysterical-she had tried to give him mouth to mouth after the shooting and crash.

Wade's mother says her son doesn't have a voice anymore.

But they do, and they will speak for him, and make sure justice is served.

"He was a young man who was just starting his life," Tiffanie said. "He was enrolled in college and he had a job, and he was just 19, just shy of 20. (He was) just starting out in his life before they decided to murder him and take it from him."

All three defendants face life in prison.

The preliminary hearing will continue tomorrow.
Copyright © 2019 KFSN-TV. All Rights Reserved.