Paramus Man Went to Psychiatric Hospital 22 Times Before He Allegedly Murdered Mom
Paramus Man Accused of Murdering Mother with Boxcutter
A Paramus man was recently placed under arrest and charged with the murder of his mother. The suspect, 30-year-old Jesus Lopez, allegedly used a boxcutter to violently slit the throat of his mom at their shared residence on Spring Valley Road in Paramus, New Jersey. Now, some people following news of the domestic violence homicide are issuing calls for stricter guidelines when it comes to mental health treatment of potentially violent individuals in NJ.
Lopez allegedly killed his mom and then left her body in the garage for nearly two weeks. The body was discovered on October 24, when a social worker in Hasbrouck Heights became concerned about Lopez and requested a welfare check by law enforcement. Paramus police officers then went to the Lopez residence and reportedly saw flies inside the home and smelled a strong odor emanating from the garage. Police entered the residence and found Lopez in a catatonic state as he sat in a chair and stared at a wall. Police then found the victim’s body, which had been decomposing. According to Bergen County law enforcement officials, Lopez confessed his crime to the arresting officers. Prosecutors soon charged Lopez with first degree murder.
New Jersey Mental Illness and Violent Crimes
One of the reasons that this homicide case has been getting a lot of media attention is the revelation that Lopez had reportedly committed several acts of domestic violence prior to the killing. In fact, Paramus police officers had received numerous 911 emergency calls from Lopez’s mother over the past two years, including one call to report that Lopez was threatening to hurt her and another call indicating that she was feeling “anxious and scared” because of her son’s “aggressive” behavior.
Those 911 calls, and the subsequent visits by Paramus law enforcement to the Lopez home, resulted in Lopez being admitted to the psych ward at Bergen Regional Medical Center. Remarkably, Lopez was admitted 22 times over a period of just a few years because authorities felt that he posed a threat of violence and that his mother needed to be protected as a result.
In the aftermath of the brutal killing, many are now questioning how Lopez’s mental health issues, as well as his propensity for violence, could have been ignored. After all, he was released from Bergen Regional Medical Center after each time he was admitted. Was this a case of Lopez “falling through the cracks”?
Unfortunately, dealing with mental health issues is not easy – even for trained medical professionals. For instance, Joe Masciandaro, the president and CEO of CarePlus in Paramus, NJ, recently stated that it is difficult for doctors to demonstrate that a patient poses a serious threat to themselves or to others. Without this showing, a psychiatric hospital must release a patient after a hold of just 72 hours. That is what happened each time with Lopez. Sadly, the end result was tragic.
Free Consultation with Paramus, NJ Criminal Defense Attorneys Who Represent Clients Facing Violent Crime Charges
Travis Tormey and his team of Paramus criminal defense attorneys have successfully represented countless clients charged with violent crimes in NJ, including Bergen County, New Jersey. If you were arrested and charged with a violent crime like first degree murder, aggravated assault, or terroristic threats, don’t hesitate to contact the Tormey Law Firm.