Defendant Receives the Maximum Sentence for Fatally Shooting Victim on City's Lower West Side

Modified: July 20, 2022 2:52pm

7/20/2022

Erie County District Attorney John J. Flynn announces that 39-year-old Josean Roman-Cruz of Buffalo was sentenced yesterday morning before State Supreme Court Justice Paul B. Wojtaszek to a determinate sentence of 25 years in prison followed by 5 years of post-release supervision.

On Friday, March 27, 2020, at approximately 7:15 p.m., the defendant shot the victim multiple times in the vicinity of Pennsylvania Street and Lakeview Avenue in the City of Buffalo. The victim, 50-year-old Wilfredo Justiniano, died from his injuries.

Roman-Cruz pleaded guilty to one count of Manslaughter in the First Degree (Class “B” violent felony) on November 23, 2021. The defendant pleaded guilty to the charge a week before his scheduled jury trial.

DA Flynn commends retired Detective Sgt. William Cooley, Detective Jay Mayhook and Detective Scott Malec of the Buffalo Police Department Homicide Squad as well as the Amherst Police Department for their work on the case.  

The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Eugene T. Partridge, III of the Homicide Bureau.