Camden County Prosecutor Mary Eva Colalillo and Camden County Police Chief Scott Thomson announced a Texas man has been apprehended in connection with an arson that killed three people in Camden in 2004.
Jesus Perez-Rivera, 30, of Killeen, Texas, is charged with three counts of felony murder for the deaths of Maria Silva, 29, and her husband, Luis Silva, 32, as well as her 6-year-old son, Carlos Cruz.
The fire was reported at approximately 4:50 a.m. on July 9, 2004, at the victims’ residence on the 900 block of North 22nd Street. The three victims were among nine people who were rescued by Camden City Fire Department and transported to the hospital. The Silvas and Cruz subsequently died as a results of the injuries they sustained in the fire.
An investigation conducted by the City of Camden Fire Marshall’s Office determined that the fire was “incendiary.”
Perez-Rivera, a former Camden resident who moved to Puerto Rico with his family shortly after the fire, was identified as a suspect during a subsequent investigation by detectives in Camden County.
Perez-Rivera was taken into custody by the Killeen Police Department. He is being held in Texas while awaiting extradition to New Jersey.
The investigation into the fire is ongoing.
Anyone with information is urged to contact Camden County Prosecutor’s Office Detective Frank Simpson at (856) 365-3114 or Camden County Police Detective Shawn Donlon at (856) 757-7420.
Tips may also be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
All persons charged with crimes are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
Released Thursday, July 21, 2016.