JOSELYN MARTINEZ: My father was killed and
I am just supposed to forget it? Like it never happened? I don’t think so. Because we know
it doesn’t bring the person back but there is something about it, about justice that
you know it has to be done. There’s a need. COMM: In America, around a third of homicides
go unsolved every year. But when cases go cold for the victim’s friends and families,
the hunt for justice continues. JOSELYN MARTINEZ: My father, Jose Martinez,
better known as Jorge, was born in the Dominican Republic and he came over here in the 60s, I think. JOSELYN MARTINEZ: He met my mother here in
the city. He was known to be peaceful. He was well loved. He was very giving. So they
both loved the restaurant business and decided to work up to owning up a place and they did.
The restaurant, when I think back, it was all just happy moments, a lot of love and I never
saw my parents fight or argue ever not at home, not at the restaurant. So, of course,
yeah, I loved going. COMM: Then one day in 1986, Joselyn’s world
would change forever. She was just 9 years old. JOSELYN MARTINEZ: On the Saturday of November
22nd, 1986 they went to the business as usual. Around, was it 9-ish or 10 o’clock, my grandmother
gets a phone call. My father has been shot. JOSELYN MARTINEZ: She just couldn’t believe
it. She was just like the biggest shock. I didn’t take it seriously. I thought, ‘No
way.’ And I figured they taught me that if I prayed, everything will be okay. So,
I prayed a little bit and I was like, ‘Everything is going to be fine because God is going to
listen to me because I prayed.’ And I woke up in the morning and I just couldn’t believe
the screams I heard. It was just wailing coming from my mom and then I ran back into my, into
their bed and I hugged my teddy bears. I can’t even understand it sometimes, like, he was
home one day and the next day he is not home. Like, so, I still don’t get it. COMM: Joselyn’s father had been shot outside his restaurant after ejecting three youths
who had insulted his staff. JOSELYN MARTINEZ: It was horrific. Just horrific,
disastrous and we were never the same. That murderer was identified. He was from the area
actually. I think before the police identified him, he was on a plane, like, the next day.
Shot my dad, next flight to the Dominican Republic. COMM: In the Dominican Republic, 16-year-old
Justo Santos later admits the shooting but claims it was accidental and in self-defence.
In 1989 he pleads guilty under Dominican Republic law to the involuntary manslaughter of Joselyn’s
father. He pays a fine and spends one year in jail. There is no extradition agreement
with the US at the time and the NYPD close the case. But it wasn’t the end of the matter
for Joselyn. JOSELYN MARTINEZ: I wanted the world to know
what he did. It was the when the internet started and everybody started looking each
other up, like, on Myspace and stuff and Facebook. I am like, ‘Huh? What if I look him up?’
Everybody is in the computer world. Everybody is in there, connected by some way or the
other because we all are separated by six degrees. Come on, someone had to know him.
These countless, I can’t tell you the hours. I was obsessed. I am going to get
the guy. I am going to find him. I am going to get him arrested and that’s that. JOSELYN MARTINEZ: Finally in the year 2012
I was like, listen, this has to stop. Either I decide I am going to find him or
I am not. Because it was really affecting me and it only got worse. COMM: Then in January 2013, Joselyn manages
to gain access to one one of the NYPD’s files on her father’s case. In it, she finds
Santos’ date of birth, a vital piece of information and the beginning of a breakthrough
in her online search. JOSELYN MARTINEZ: It was really helpful to see
the marriage records. People marry and divorce. I am like, ‘Huh! Okay.’ Then re-marries
and I thought, ‘Okay. There is no divorce for this. Reason to believe he is still married.’
Found the wife’s name on the property of the house. I am like, ‘Oh, there is a
property. Oh, it’s owned.’ That’s a public record. I wasn’t going to mess
this up. COMM: In February 2013, Joselyn thinks she has found Santos. He is living in Miami and working as a janitor. COMM: She passes what she believes is his
home address onto an NYPD Cold Case Detective. After a few month’s investigation, Santos
is arrested. JOSELYN MARTINEZ: When the arrest was made,
I just felt, like, relief and something taken off my back. My family feels very happy, satisfied.
It has actually brought us closer now. I definitely feel like I can move on with my life now.
I just didn’t realise how much it was affecting me. It was such a big part of my life. I didn’t
know and I just feel free. My father would be proud.