Paramus Man Stabbed Dead By Son, Left For Two Days: Authorities

UPDATE: A Paramus man who’d just stabbed his father to death dragged the body to a bathroom and tried to set it on fire last week as part of an attempt to conceal what he’d done, authorities said.

Manuel Thomas (left) and his son, Melvin, 693 Bruce Drive in Paramus

Manuel Thomas (left) and his son, Melvin, 693 Bruce Drive in Paramus

Photo Credit: Boyd A. Loving for DAILY VOICE / BCJ / CFG

Melvin Thomas repeatedly stabbed his father, 61-year-old Manuel Thomas, in the chest with a kitchen knife on Valentine’s Day, a criminal complaint says.

He then dragged the bloody corpse to a bathroom where he tried igniting it with a lighter, according to the complaint filed by Paramus Police Detective Justin Sicari.

“This attempt failed,” the detective wrote.

Melvin Thomas wiped off the bloody murder weapon and cleaned spatters from several areas of their home "in an attempt to destroy the evidence,” Sicari added.

He waited two days, according to sources, to call 911 and report the domestic homicide to Paramus police on Friday, Feb. 16. It wasn’t clear whether he’d been in the house the entire time until then.


NOTE: A previous version of this report included a photo that wasn't of the murder victim, Manuel Thomas, who is correctly pictured at left at the top of this story.


Members of Paramus' Emergency Services Unit and other responders rushed to 693 Bruce Drive near Forest Avenue shortly after 5:30 p.m.

Police forced their way in when they got no response.

The elder Thomas’s decomposing body was found “downstairs,” Sicari reported.

Melvin Thomas was brought in custody to the Bergen County prosecutor’s nearby Paramus office, where he was first read his rights and then interviewed, the detective wrote.

Meanwhile, members of the Bergen County Sheriff’s Bureau of Criminal Identification collected the knife, bloody swabs and Melvin Thomas’s cellphone.

The 5-foot-5-inch, 204-pound Thomas remains held in the Bergen County Jail, charged with murder, desecration of human remains, hindering his arrest and weapons offenses.

Authorities haven't yet shared the suspected motive in the apparent crime of passion.

Melvin has two siblings – a brother, Levin, 31, and a sister, Ashley, 25.

Their mother and Manuel Thomas's wife of 36 years, Lissy, died in March 2021.

Detectives at one point escorted Ashley Thomas to the house, which was floodlit and completely cordoned off, even from many other responders. Meanwhile, the sheriff’s forensic squad collected evidence and investigators continued their work.

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