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Queens Chronicle

While in prison, felon charged with murder

DNA test links man to unsolved crime

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Posted: Thursday, October 3, 2013 10:30 am

A few days before his release from prison, a DNA test linked a felon with an unsolved murder case and kept him in the system, according to Queens District Attorney Richard Brown.

Convicted felon Jose Martinez was indicted last Thursday for allegedly raping and murdering Carmen Saldana, 23, of Astoria, in 2009.

“She had a bright and promising future which was abruptly cut short by her brutal and senseless murder, allegedly at the hands of the defendant,” Brown said.

Martinez, 30, formerly of Queens, was arraigned on a 15-count indictment charging him with second-degree murder, predatory sexual assault, first-degree kidnaping, first-degree rape, first-degree criminal sexual act, first- and second-degree burglary, first-degree unlawful imprisonment, petit larceny and fifth-degree criminal possession of stolen property.

He faces up to 25 years to life in prison if convicted.

Martinez allegedly offered to walk Saldana home from a party in Long Island City, Brown said. When they reached her Astoria apartment building, he asked to come in, but she allegedly refused.

Martinez then allegedly kicked in the apartment house door and forced his way into her apartment, where he allegedly raped and murdered her, according to the district attorney.

DNA evidence was recovered at the murder scene and stored in a database.

In 2011 Martinez was arrested for attacking a cab driver at LaGuardia Airport. He pleaded guilty to first-degree reckless endangerment in 2012 and was sentenced to serve an indeterminate term of one to three years in prison.

He was required to submit a DNA sample as a result of that conviction. It was matched to DNA recovered at Saldana’s apartment.

Martinez was scheduled to be released from state prison on Monday, but has been ordered to stay without bail because of the new indictment.

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