FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Raymond Worrall
PHONE: (201) 795-6400 Ext. 6737
DATE: October 25, 2018
CHARGES UPGRADED TO MANSLAUGHTER IN JERSEY CITY HOMICIDE
Hudson County Prosecutor Esther Suarez has released the following information:
On Tuesday, October 23, 2018, the Regional Medical Examiner’s Office issued findings in the death of Luis Rivera, age 38, of Hoboken. The RMEO determined the Cause of death to be blunt force trauma to the head and the Manner of death to be Homicide.
On Wednesday, October 24, 2018, charges against Joshua Espada, age 29, of Jersey City were upgraded to Reckless Manslaughter in violation of N.J.S. 2C:11-4b(1), a second-degree crime. He is currently being held at the Hudson County Correctional Facility in Kearny until his first appearance in Hudson County Superior Court in Jersey City.
On October 20, 2018, at approximately 3:00 a.m., Jersey City Police Officers were dispatched to the area of 1st Street and Marin Boulevard in Jersey City on a report of a street fight.
Upon arrival, officers found an unresponsive male lying with apparent facial wounds on the ground at that location. The man, who was identified as Rivera, was treated at the scene by Emergency Medical Services before being transported to the Jersey City Medical Center. Rivera was pronounced dead at approximately 4:10 a.m. on October 21, 2018.
The initial investigation revealed that Rivera was assaulted at that location. On October 21, 2018, a warrant was issued for the arrest of Espada, charging him initially with Aggravated Assault in violation of N.J.S. 2C:12-1b(1), also a second-degree crime.
The Prosecutor’s Homicide Unit and the Jersey City Police Department are actively investigating the case. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office at 201-915-1345 or to leave an anonymous tip on the Prosecutor’s Office official website at: https://www.hudsoncountyprosecutorsofficenj.org/homicide-tip/. All information will be kept confidential.
The above charges are merely accusations, and the defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty. R.P.C.3.6(b)(6).