Rodolfo Rivera Valencia has been identified as the 24-year-old United States Marine who allegedly killed his wife after “blacking out” at a military ball that the pair attended just hours earlier.
Valencia, 24, was charged with murder after his 20-year-old wife, Natasha Soto Rivera, was found dead at a Marriott Hotel in Arlington, Virginia, on Saturday, November 3.
According to a report from The Free Lance-Star, Valencia and Soto Rivera — who was also in the United States Marine Corps — went to the Marine Corps Ball on Friday, November 2 at the Marriott Hotel in Virginia, which is located approximately 30 miles from their base in Quantico.
The following morning, Valencia called authorities to report Soto Rivera’s murder. While Valencia told dispatchers that he believed he killed his wife, he later told detectives that he “drank to the point of blacking out” and did not recall how Soto Rivera died.
Responding police officers discovered that Soto Rivera’s injuries were consistent with being strangled and that she “endured a brutal beating.”
Valencia and Soto Rivera, who had been married for approximately seven or eight months, shared one infant boy together.
According to an affidavit for a search warrant filed in Stafford Circuit Court, the Arlington emergency communications center received a call from Rivera Valencia at 10:13 a.m. He told the dispatcher that his wife was unconscious and he believed he had killed her, the affidavit states.
Arlington Detective Jasmine Sean wrote that Natasha Rivera had injuries to her neck consistent with strangulation and bruising to her arms and face indicative of a “brutal” beating. She was already dead when police and medical personnel arrived at the motel.
Sean wrote that Rivera Valencia said that he drank to the point of “blacking out” following the Marine Corps dinner and ceremonies and had no memory of what had happened the night before. He said he woke up that morning with his dead wife beside him and did not render medical aid or immediately call 911.
While speaking to investigators, Valencia claimed to have an anger problem.
At this time, Valencia is being held in the Arlington County Detention Center under no bond.