- Associated Press - Saturday, December 26, 2015

LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) - A Lexington man had once hoped to become a counselor for at-risk and violent kids, but his life ended abruptly when he was shot to death earlier this month.

Andres Soto Jr., 20, was shot Dec. 7 while standing outside on Lexington’s Oxford Circle after 3 a.m. He later died at a hospital. A 15-year-old has been charged with murder in the shooting.

Soto’s family, friends and mentors told The Lexington Herald-Leader (https://bit.ly/1mjLbHH ) Soto had worked to overcome adversity and to help others do the same.

“It’s a terrible irony that what he wanted to do was to counsel that kind of kid,” said Elise Crisp, who taught Soto at The Learning Center at Linlee. Soto graduated from there in 2013.

Police say there’s no evidence that indicates Soto knew the shooter.

When Soto was young, he joined a gang, his brother Bernardo Soto said. But he later decided that wasn’t a good path for him.

“We were raised up a little rough,” Bernardo Soto said. “We saw some rough stuff on the streets.”

The Learning Center’s founding principal Ronald Chi said Soto took his desire to help others outside of the classroom. He led presentation efforts for the city’s Senior Center Project, and also led panel discussions for graduate education students and was a student leader, Chi said.

“His main goal was to help out kids, especially those that don’t understand that education is important, that don’t pay attention,” Bernardo Soto said. “He was trying to bring it up and make sure kids have a future. The kids today are the future of tomorrow and that’s what he lived by.”


Information from: Lexington Herald-Leader, https://www.kentucky.com

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