Arrest in Lower West Side Homicide

Modified: August 6, 2020 10:37am

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Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn announces that 37-year-old Josean Roman-Cruz of Buffalo has been arraigned before Erie County Court Judge Sheila A. DiTullio, acting as a Buffalo City Court Judge, on one count of Murder in the Second Degree, a Class “A-1” felony, and one count of Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Second Degree, a Class “C” violent felony.

It is alleged that on Friday, March 27, 2020, at approximately 7:15 p.m., the defendant fatally shot 50-year-old Wilfredo Justiniano in the vicinity of Pennsylvania Street and Lakeview Avenue in the City of Buffalo. 

At the time the defendant was apprehended, an illegal, loaded firearm was found in the vehicle he was driving. 

Roman-Cruz is scheduled to return on Tuesday, April 28, 2020 at 9:00 a.m. He was held without bail. 

If convicted on all charges, he faces a maximum of 25 years to life in prison.  

DA Flynn commends Detective Sgt. William Cooley, Detective Mark White, Detective Jay Mayhook and Detective Scott Malec of the Buffalo Police Department Homicide Squad for their work on the case. DA Flynn also commends the U.S. Marshals Violent Felony Warrant Squad and the Amherst Police Department for their assistance.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Eugene T. Partridge, III of the DA’s Homicide Bureau. 

As are all persons accused of a crime, the defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.