Ryan Rice wants to make sure the punishment fits the crime.
As the stepson of Barbara Latiolais, the Castro Valley woman who was strangled and burned to death in October, that means life in prison without the possibility of parole.
With the help of his girlfriend, Amanda Miller, Rice is circulating an Internet petition asking for support in making sure that the accused -- 16-year-old Christian Birdsall and 18-year-old Cody Nicosia -- never leave jail.
"I'm 200 percent convinced they're guilty," Rice, 24, said in a telephone interview from Texas where he lives with Miller, 22, and their two-year-old son.
Rice grew up in Castro Valley and was raised by Barbara Latiolais as if he were her son. Ryan Rice said he is moving back to Castro Valley soon to be close to his dad, Mike Rice -- who was the longtime partner of Latiolais.
The petition is toughly worded: "These monsters knew exactly what they were doing, and should recieve no mercy."
Castro Valley has been shocked and divided by the killings. Many people knew the accused and/or the victim. There have been heated exchanges in the comments.
Mike Rice, who is the father of Ryan and the former partner of Barbara Latiolais, shared his grief over her killing in a Patch interview.
Mike Rice has set up “The Barbara Latiolais Memorial Fund” to help her daughter, Lalanya Felix, 40, who lives in Tracy, and his son, Ryan, cope with the fallout.
Inteested parties can make donations in person or by mail at any Wells Fargo branch.
Write “Barbara Latiolais Memorial Fund” and account number 1392401558 on the check. Online contributions are also possible but the process will vary from bank to bank. If needed, Wells Fargo’s ABA routing number is 121042882.