Man accused of bludgeoning his friend with an ax and dumping the body pleads not guilty

Share via

A man accused of bludgeoning his friend to death with an ax and then dumping his body in Azusa Canyon pleaded not guilty Monday, the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office said.

Phillip Von Wade, 20, was charged Monday with one count of murder in the death of Rahkeem Reyes, 27. The felony complaint includes a special allegation that Wade used a deadly and dangerous weapon during the crime, the district attorney’s office said in a statement.

Reyes, a professional dancer who went by the name “Rocky,” was bludgeoned with an ax at a West Covina residence on Sept. 5, the prosecutor said. His body was dumped in Azusa Canyon, where it was discovered by detectives five days later.


Los Angeles County Superior Court Judge Salvatore Sirna set Wade’s bail at $2.02 million. He is scheduled to return to court on Oct. 17 for a preliminary hearing.

If convicted as charged, Wade faces a maximum possible sentence of 26 years to life in state prison.

After Reyes’ body was found, his family asked for privacy in a message posted on a Facebook group created to help find him.

“We are deeply heart broken,” the statement said. “God bless you and god bless our son, Rocky.”

For more California news, follow @brittny_mejia



Man in Halloween mask robs Placentia gas station

Woman in Bay Area police sex scandal is charged with battery in Florida

Outrage, questions after 9/11 memorial vandalized at Occidental College