UPDATE: The getaway driver in an armed robbery turned cold-blooded killing in Fairview was convicted this week of felony murder, among other counts, following a trial in Hackensack.
David Martinez of North Bergen will get a minimum 30-year state prison sentence, at the very least, for the June 2019 shooting death of David Duque-Soto at his Fourth Street apartment.
Superior Court Judge Margaret M. Foti, who presided over the four-week trial, scheduled sentencing for April 21.
Assistant Bergen County Prosecutors Suzanne Cevasco and Matthew Fitzpatrick presented 16 witnesses to prove that Martinez hatched the planned robbery with three associates who confronted and killed Duque-Soto in his home.
The plan’s mastermind, Lexie Burke of Jersey City, took a deal from prosecutors after his trial had already begun, pleading guilty to aggravated manslaughter, among other counts, last April.
Two other defendants who went into Duque-Soto's duplex apartment that fateful night, Carlos Burgos of Jersey City and Raul Torres of North Bergen, are still awaiting trial.
So is Dylan E. Rodriguez of North Bergen, who was charged with supplying and then hiding the murder weapon, which was recovered from his attic during what investigators told Daily Voice were no fewer than a half-dozen warranted searches.
Burke, it turns out, could end up testifying against any or all of the three remaining defendants.
The group had gone to Duque-Soto’s home the night of June 29, 2019 intending to steal drugs and money, authorities said. They were there all of a minute, prosecutors said.
In an odd twist, a companion who'd been in the bathroom when the killing occurred hopped a bus to West New York, where he ran into police headquarters to report what had happened, investigators told Daily Voice.
A responding ALS unit pronounced Duque-Soto dead of gunshot wounds and acute blunt-force trauma.
Painstaking work by several of Bergen County Prosecutor Mark Musella’s detectives, assisted by Fairview police, led to arrests barely 48 hours after Duque-Soto was slain.
Investigators canvassed the area and found security video that showed two distinctive vehicles, which helped them develop suspects. A series of interviews that followed in Fairview and North Bergen led to the warranted searches.
Burke and others had previously gone to Duque-Soto's apartment to buy a pound of pot, but he purportedly pulled a gun on them and they left.
The group returned soon after, apparently seeking revenge.
Based on the evidence and testimony, the jurors in Hackensack found Martinez guilty on Monday of felony murder, armed robbery, conspiracy and two weapons counts.
Click here to follow Daily Voice Cliffside Park-Edgewater and receive free news updates.