A 42-year-old man from Portugal faces a 38-year state prison sentence and deportation in connection with multiple shootings while fighting over a handgun at a Long Branch restaurant.
Miguel Camara, of Long Branch, pleaded guilty to murder and attempted murder charges for the 2018 incident at Bom DMais, Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher J. Gramiccioni said in a statement.
Camara agreed to the plea on Tuesday before Monmouth County Superior Court Judge Vincent Falcetano, the prosecutor said. He is scheduled to be sentenced on Sept. 11.
Camara admitted to killing Marco Moreira, 45, also of Long Branch; attempting to kill Fernanda Silva and endangering the welfare of Silva’s 5-year-old daughter, the prosecutor said.
The Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office has recommended that Camara receive a 30-year sentence in a New Jersey state prison with a 30-year period of parole ineligibility on the murder charge; a 10-year state prison sentence on the attempted murder charge, subject to the provisions of the No Early Release Act, requiring Camara serve 85 percent of the sentence before he is eligible for parole and 5 years in prison for the endangering the welfare of child, Gramiccioni said.
All charges are to run consecutive to one another for an aggregate 45 years in prison and 38½ years of parole ineligibility, Gramiccioni. Camara also would be under parole supervision for five years after his release from state prison and would face deportation back to his home country of Portugal.
A joint investigation by the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office and Long Branch Police Department determined Camara entered the Bom DMais restaurant on Aug. 21, 2018, and approached the table where his ex-girlfriend, Fernanda Silva, her two children ages 18 and 5, and Marco Moreira were seated. Camara threw a court document on the table, pulled out a handgun and pointed it at Moreira’s head several times before shooting him, Gramiccioni said. A struggle for the gun ensued between Silva, her 18-year-old son and Camara, the prosecutor said. During the struggle Camara repeatedly pointed the gun at Silva, firing it twice but missing her. Silva’s five-year-old daughter was a few feet away during the struggle, Gramiccioni said.
Long Branch Police Officer George Samol was flagged down by a motorist on Broadway on around 3:15 p.m. the day of the shooting.The motorist reported a fight inside the Bom DMais restaurant, and a shot fired through the front window, Gramiccioni said.
Officer Samol saw two men and a woman wrestling with a man later identified as Camara, who was holding a gun, Gramiccioni said.
Samol pulled out his duty weapon and ordered Camara to drop the gun, tjhe prosecutor said. As the 18-year-old son of Fernanda Silva gained control over the gun, Camara immediately turned to Samol and grabbed for his duty weapon, trying to take it, the prosecutor said. Samol was able to wrestle the gun from Camara as additional officers arrived, Gramiccioni said.
After Camara was placed under arrest, officers found a victim, Marco Moreira, lying dead on the floor of the restaurant. He was pronounced dead at 3:38 p.m., Gramiccioni said.
The case is assigned to Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutors Hoda Soliman and Emily Cartmell. Camara's defense lawyers are J. Michael Wicke and Elizabeth Williams.
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