A man was out celebrating his birthday with friends. But a Jeep following him was flashing its lights. When he got out to speak to the other driver, the shooting started.
Now, the killer will head to prison for the rest of his life.
Recently, a Rhode Island judge sentenced Jario Esdel Galva, 23, to life in prison for the killing of Joel Rosario. In November 2021, a jury convicted Galva of second-degree murder, discharge of a firearm when committing a crime of violence resulting in death, discharge of a firearm from a motor vehicle and carrying a pistol without a license.
On Halloween 2020, Rosario was celebrating his 22nd birthday with a group of friends and family at a Central Falls, Rhode Island, home, according to the Rhode Island Attorney General’s office.
Rosario and several friends left and were heading to another party.
As they drove in multiple vehicles, Galva followed closely behind in his jeep, according to prosecutors. Witnesses said Galva flashed his high beams several times as he drove behind the group.
When they reached an intersection, Rosario got out of one of the vehicles and walked to the passenger’s side of Galva’s Jeep, according to prosecutors.
The defendant rolled down the window and fired a single shot into Rosario’s chest.
Friends took Rosario to the hospital, where he was pronounced dead, according to prosecutors. Galva turned himself in days later.
Prosecutors did not detail what led Galva to follow the group or what led him to flash his lights at the birthday party.
Investigators determined the gun used in the shooting was illegally obtained.
“This was a tragic event where the removal of illegal guns and the de-escalation of a dispute may have made a difference,” said Pawtucket police acting Public Safety Director Chief Tina Goncalves. “The Pawtucket Police Department is happy to be a partner of the Attorney General's office on these illegal firearms investigations as we all work to keep our community safe.”