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Jose Sandoval in 1986
José in 1986
Jose Sandoval in 2009
José in 2009
José Sandoval
Portrayed by Michael Francis Cardelle (1986)
Carlos Sanz (2009)
Episode Dead Heat
Status Arrested

José Sandoval is a character from "Dead Heat". He was the son and only child of Sonny Sandoval. His parents were divorced.

José grew up with the jockey lifestyle, and hoped to be one. This hope was dashed after a growth spurt at 14. Instead, he became a horse trainer. Later on, José would develop a gambling problem, which created issues for his father. Sonny still loved his son, however, and planned to make him sole beneficiary of his life insurance policy.

The night after the Derby Cup, which Sonny threw in order to quit being a jockey, a drunk José approached his father at the stable. Sonny planned to expose the jockey world's dirty secret--killing underperforming horses for insurance money--after their boss Randall Baxter killed Sonny's horse Firewalker in a barn fire. José was already enraged at his father for throwing the Derby Cup, as he bet $10,000 on him and was fired by Randall. The last straw came when Jose was told by his father that he never wanted him to be involved in this dirty horse racing business. This was devastating to Jose because all he wanted was to be as good as Sonny. José struck Sonny across the head with a rake, killing him. He buried his father in a horse's grave to cover up the murder, with everyone assuming Sonny returned Mexico just as he always talked about.

The horse grave was found in 2009. José was the first to be questioned. Twice, he pointed to Angelo Rivera as a suspect because he resented that Angelo seemed to be the son that his father always wanted. Angelo rode horses while Jose just trained them. Angelo was in touch with his Mexican roots while Jose was more Americanized (he even lied about not understanding Spanish). In the end, José's crime was exposed and he was arrested in front of Angelo. It was only then he learned of Sonny's life insurance policy.