ELIZABETH, NJ – The Essex County man charged in the 2015 killing of a Rahway woman was found guilty of murder on Wednesday.
Roberto Grillo, 39, of Bloomfield, was convicted murder and nine other charges related to the death of 35-year-old Yolanda Vega, putting an end to the four-week trial before state Superior Court Judge Robert Kirsch, acting Union County Prosecutor Michael A. Monahan announced in a press release on Wednesday.
Rahway Police and the Union County Homicide Task Force found Vega’s body inside a home on Beacon Street in Rahway during the early morning hours of December 7, 2015. According to Union County Assistant Prosecutor Melissa Spagnoli, who represented the state at trial, Vega’s death was rule a homicide by strangulation.
Grillo was charged one week after Vega’s death following a joint investigation involving the Homicide Task Force, the Prosecutor’s Office’s High Tech Unit, the Rahway Police Department, the Linden Police Department, and the Union County Sheriff’s Office Identification Unit.
According to the press release, police were able to put Grillo near the Rahway house because the Linden Police Department arrested him for trespassing at the Phillips 66 Bayway Refinery approximately 90 minutes after Vega was killed. The refinery is less than half a mile from Vega’s home.
A Union County grand jury indicted Grillo on 10 counts, including first-degree murder, first-degree felony murder, second-degree burglary six weapons offenses and fourth-degree criminal trespassing, the press release said.
Kirsch has scheduled a sentencing hearing for December 7. The Prosecutor’s Office said Grillo could get life in state prison.