A man has been charged with stabbing and murdering a Long Branch resident on Jan. 3.
Victor Garzon-Alvarez, also known as Victor Sanchez-Gonzalez, whose last known address was 326 Willow Avenue in Long Branch, was charged Wednesday night with first degree Murder, fourth degree unlawful possession of a weapon and third degree possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose.
According to a release from the Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office, the Long Branch Police responded to a basement apartment at 326 Willow Avenue at about 4:30 p.m. after receiving a call from one of the tenants about an unknown, deceased male, who was located inside the dwelling. County Director of Investigations Marc Lemieux has said the address is one large home with multiple apartments.
Manuel Vilaseca-Cortez, 39, a Long Branch resident, was pronounced dead by medical examiner Dr. Karluk, who confirmed he died as the result of several stab wounds.
A joint investigation involving the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crimes Unit and the Long Branch Police Department was initiated and information developed during the investigation led police to seek the whereabouts of Garzon-Alvarez, who was one of the tenants of the basement apartment where the victim was discovered.
With the assistance of the United States Marshals’ Fugitive Task Force, Garzon-Alvarez was apprehended Wednesday working at a house in Brielle where he was taken into custody at approximately 1 p.m. Garzon- Alvarez was charged after the investigation revealed he knew the victim and invited him back to his basement apartment on Willow Ave. back on Jan. 1. At some point the two had a dispute and Garzon-Alvarez stabbed the victim with a knife that he carried, and then left him in the apartment.
Garzon-Alvarez’s bail was set at $1,575,000 with no ten percent option by Monmouth County Superior Court Judge James J. McGann. Garzon-Alvarez was placed in the Monmouth County Jail in lieu of bail.
The investigation is ongoing and anyone with additional information should contact Detective Jose Cruz of the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office at 732-431-7160 Ext. 3520 or Detective Michael Decker of the Long Branch Police Department at 732-222-1000 Ext. 5392.