Unknown Cesar Torralba Killer- New Jersey- 2007 Jan 5, 2018 1:53:00 GMT -5
Post by Scumhunter on Jan 5, 2018 1:53:00 GMT -5
(Above photo credit: app.com via Gannett)
ASBURY PARK - Ten years after an Asbury Park man was shot and killed in the hallway of his apartment building, investigators are hoping someone will come forward with information leading to an arrest.
On Christmas Eve 2007, Cesar Torralba visited the Super Extra grocery store on Memorial Drive to purchase groceries for a holiday dinner. His father was flying to New Jersey from Mexico for the occasion and he'd planned a dinner of stuffed chiles in celebration.
But when he returned to his Sixth Avenue apartment building, he was confronted.
Hearing a commotion, Torralba's wife, Minerva, looked through a peephole, where she saw an unknown man – black, wearing black and brandishing a small black handgun – demand money from her husband.
She ran to call 911, but heard a shot rang out before she got to the phone. Her husband died an hour later.
The assailant was never found or identified.
"I can see him. I can see the man dressed in black running down to the elevator after he shot my father," his eldest daughter, Kaztenny Torralba, told the Press in 2013.
What little information flow the Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office's investigation had in the days and weeks after the case slowly dried up. Law enforcement officials have instead spent years trying to prod members of the public – witnesses or anyone who knows the killer – to come forward.
The Asbury Park community rallied around the Torralbas after the murder. Residents wrote to the Guardian Angels for help, and the group – including founder Curtis Sliwa – visited the city in the days after the murder to pass out flyers and plead for someone to come forward.
A candelight vigil and march was held one year after Torralba's murder, where community leaders tried to dispel any fears people might have.
And a $5,000 reward has been offered through the Monmouth County Crime Stoppers tip line, where anonymous tips are welcome.
“Cesar Torralba’s widow and his two now-teenage daughters deserve answers and they deserve justice," Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher Gramiccioni said. "Ten years later, we simply cannot forget that reality and facts of the case: Here’s a man who left his two young children and his wife to go buy groceries for Christmas Eve dinner. Then, just prior to reuniting with them, he was senselessly gunned down with only his front door separating him from his family."
The lack of information frustrated the Torralba family, as well: In a 2013 interview, Minerva Torralba accused the prosecutor's office of not "working hard" on her husband's case.
"I want to know. We need the closure. And Christmas is the time, if someone knows who killed my husband, they need to step forward," she said at the time.
It took two years before the Torralbas could even bring themselves to display or decorate a Christmas tree.
"We just couldn't celebrate it. There was no reason to celebrate the holiday," Minerva Torralba Hernandez said. "Then, about two years after he died, we decided to bring out a small tree."
Tipsters can anonymously contact Monmouth County Crime Stoppers at 1-800-671-4400 or text "MONMOUTH" and information to 274637, or by visiting monmouthcountycrimestoppers.com.
Anyone who has any information regarding the murder of Cesar Torralba should contact Detective Jose Cruz of the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office at 800-533-7443 or Asbury Park Police Detective Gabriel Carrasquillo at 732-774-1300.
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