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Freehold Man Admits Strangling His Pregnant Girlfriend

Saturday, January 14, 2017 5:02
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Sender Neftali Villatoro-Reyes, 27, of Freehold Borough, pleaded guilty on Friday to first degree Aggravated Manslaughter for the May 16, 2014 strangulation death of Lucenay Fermin Gallegos in their borough home, Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher J. Gramiccioni announced.

Fermin Gallegos, who was 30 years old at the time of her death, was five months pregnant.

Villatoro-Reyes called 911 at about 2:15 a.m. on May 16, 2014 and reported that he killed his girlfriend.  Freehold Borough police officers responded to the couple’s 51 Hudson Street home where they found Fermin Gallegos dead on the couch.  She was pronounced dead at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center at 3:27 a.m., according to Gramiccioni’s announcement.  Middlesex County Medical Examiner Diane Karluk ruled the cause of death as asphyxia due to manual strangulation following an autopsy performed the same day.

Villatoro-Reyes has been in the custody of the Monmouth County Correctional Institution on $1,000,000 bail with no 10% option since the time of his arrest.  A Monmouth County Grand Jury indicted him on one count of Murder on May 23, 2015.  As a result of his plea agreement, the Prosecution is recommending a 28 year sentence in state prison subject to the No Early Release Act.  Under the agreement, Villatoro-Reyes must serve 85% of his sentence before he is eligible for parole; in addition, he will be under parole supervision for five years once released.

Superior Court Judge Richard W. English is scheduled to sentence the defendant on April 21, 2017


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