Nine months after they broke up, the two of them had a violent fight in the woman's apartment before the appalling crime.
Trigger warning: The story contains details of violence that might be distressing to some readers.
"An evil person" put his ex-girlfriend through absolute horror by stuffing her inside a suitcase in the final moments of her life.
The man named Javier Da Silva, 26, previously admitted that he had a violent fight with his ex-girlfriend, Valerie Reyes, in her apartment in New York before committing the appalling act.
When the incident took place, Javier was working as a short-order cook and cashier at a restaurant; the Venezuelan immigrant had also overstayed his visa when he committed the crime. As for Valerie, she was working at a bookstore and dreamed of becoming a tattoo artist.
About nine months after they broke up, the violent altercation took place between them, and Javier is also accused of kidnapping the young woman.
Javier reportedly tied up Valerie's arms and feet, and he taped her mouth shut during the fight. While she was still alive, the ex-boyfriend put her inside a suitcase before dumping her in a wooded area in Greenwich.
After leaving her to die in January, 2019, Javier showed no remorse as he went on to empty her bank account and sell her items for money. Valerie was soon reported missing and was last seen on January 29, according to a Greenwich Police post on Facebook.
It took about a week before the suitcase, with Valerie's body inside, was found on February 5, 2019. The Connecticut Medical Examiner's Office concluded that Valerie suffocated and died of homicidal asphyxiation after being dumped on the side of the road, according to PEOPLE.
"Javier Da Silva committed a horrific kidnapping that resulted in the death of a young woman," said U.S. Attorney Audrey Strauss during Javier's sentencing on Thursday, September 23, 2021.
"In the days after, he used her ATM card to empty her bank account and then attempted to cover up the evidence of his conduct," Strauss continued. "Valerie Reyes, the victim of this crime, was in the prime of her life when it was senselessly ended by Da Silva's abhorrent act. Those who commit violence, especially those who kill, will not escape justice."
During the sentencing, Valerie's devastated mother, Norma Sanchez, called her daughter's killer a "selfish, greedy and soulless person."
"You, Javier, deserve nothing but pain and rejection," said Norma, as quoted by ABC News.
Javier was seen crying in front of the courtroom during the hearing and said: "No words can express how repulsed I am by the acts I committed. I will never forgive myself for that. I cannot ask (her family) to forgive me because I don’t deserve it. I would like them to know I’m very sorry."
In court, prosecutors disagreed with the idea of Javier being remorseful and pointed out that he used Valerie's debit card to withdraw $5,000 and even sold her iPad after dumping the suitcase.
Sentencing day for Javier da Silva for killing Valerie Reyes of New Rochelle. Defense submitted many pics to bolster claim he’s loving and respectful. Prosecution submitted one pic - da Silva posing with stuff he got after trading iPad he stole from Valerie. pic.twitter.com/7Ix32XZq6b— Tony Aiello (@AielloTV) September 23, 2021
When District Judge Vincent Briccetti spoke, the federal judge called Javier "an evil person" and said his actions were "sickening."
The judge handed over a prison sentence of 30 years to Javier at Thursday's sentencing.
Cover image source: Greenwich Police