Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley D. Billhimer announced that on January 22, 2024, Juan Santiago-Rojas, 31, of Point Pleasant Borough, was charged with Attempted Murder in connection with an incident that occurred in Point Pleasant Borough on August 22, 2022.
On August 22, 2022, Officers from the Point Pleasant Borough Police Department responded to a residence on Butler Avenue for a report of an unconscious female. Responding Officers found the unconscious female victim with serious injuries to her head and neck area. The victim was thereafter transported to Hackensack Meridian Ocean Medical Center in Brick Township. Due to the nature and extent of her injuries, the victim was transferred to Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune, where she was treated and eventually released.
An investigation conducted by the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Special Victims Unit, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crime Unit, Point Pleasant Borough Police Department, and Ocean County Sheriff’s Office Crime Scene Investigation Unit, revealed that the victim had been assaulted by Santiago-Rojas on August 22, 2022. Santiago-Rojas was initially charged with Aggravated Assault on August 23, 2022, and a warrant was issued for his arrest. A fugitive from justice, Santiago-Rojas’ name was entered in the National Crime Information Center database.
On December 8, 2023, Santiago-Rojas was taken into custody by law enforcement authorities in Wilmington, North Carolina. On January 12, 2024, Santiago-Rojas was extradited to New Jersey, and is presently lodged in the Ocean County Jail pending a detention hearing.
Further investigation by the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Special Victims Unit indicated that Santiago-Rojas assaulted the victim and strangled her to the point of unconsciousness on August 22, 2022. As a consequence, Santiago-Rojas was additionally charged with Attempted Murder on January 22, 2024. Santiago-Rojas was served with the new charge by way of complaint-warrant at the Ocean County Jail.
Prosecutor Billhimer acknowledges the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Special Victims Unit, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crime Unit, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office High Tech Crime Squad, Point Pleasant Borough Police Department, Ocean County Sheriff’s Office Crime Scene Investigation Unit, Ocean County Sheriff’s Office, United States Marshals Service, Borough Of Belmar Police Department, Borough of South River Police Department, and City of Wilmington (North Carolina) Police Department, for their collective efforts in connection with this investigation, ultimately leading to Santiago-Rojas’ apprehension and charge for Attempted Murder.
The charges referenced above are merely accusations and the press and public are reminded that all defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.