Actress tracks down her father's killer after 26 years using $70 search website
- Joselyn Martinez, 36, managed to track down Justo Santos, 43
- Santos was suspected of shooting dead her father in 1986
- Found Santos after paying search websites $70 to find her father
By Jill Reilly
PUBLISHED: 04:36 EST, 11 June 2013 | UPDATED: 09:57 EST, 11 June 2013
An aspiring actress used the internet to track down a man who shot her father dead in the streets 26 years ago.
Joselyn Martinez, 36, conducted an online manhunt to find Justo Santos, 43, who was suspected of killing her father in 1986.
He was arrested in Miami on Thursday and confessed to the killing José 'George' Martinez.
'Knowing the person my father was, I couldn’t live with myself if (Santos) stayed free,' Ms Martinez explained after hearing Santos will be taken back to New York and face the charges related to the killing.
Internet sleuth: Joselyn Martinez, 36, was just nine when her father was killed in front of her mother in Manhattan. She has now managed to track down man who was suspected of killing her father in 1986
Ms Martinez from New York was just nine when her father was killed in front of his wife in Inwood, Manhattan, reported the New York Post.
Santos, then 16, and two of his companions were thrown out of Mr Martinez’s restaurant, Dominican Express, after they started harassing his wife Idalia and making sexual comments.
On the sidewalk witnesses told police that Santos pulled a
pistol and shot the restaurateur in front of his terrified wife.
He slumped down on the ground and bleeding heavily, Idalia took her husband to New York-Presbyterian Hospital Columbia in a cab, but he died.
Difficult memories: Joselyn Martinez and her mother at her birthday party. My mom told me to 'never forget his name,' Ms Martinez explained
Police identified Santos as the shooter, but he fled to the Dominican Republic and they could not locate him.
Ms Martinez kept the wanted posters to make sure she would not forget who she was hunting.
'My mom told me to never forget his name. She’d tell me, "You have to know who did this to your family",' she explained.
Ms Martinez started to use social media, she kept an eye out for the man she had been looking for, although his name did not show up on Facebook or MySpace.
Then in 2008, she signed up for a free promotional search on Background.com and Santos' name appeared.
Write caption here
Spurred on by the results, Joselyn paid $70 fees to Background.com and similar sites, including USA-Peopleseach.com, Peoplelookup.com and Intelius.com.
'They all had it. They had his address. They had his phone number,' Ms Martinez said.
'He must have thought it was all over, that he had gotten away with it.'
She handed the details over to the NYPD in a desperate attempt to help them solve the cold case.
Detectives called her on Friday to let her know he had been arrested by Miami police.
Santos will now be taken to New York to face charges.
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