Elizabeth gang member sentenced to 50 years for killing

An Elizabeth man has been sentenced to 50 years in state prison for the shooting death of a Middlesex County resident at a local housing complex in 2014, acting Union County Prosecutor Michael A. Monahan announced Friday.

Gregory Torres, 23, must serve at least 85 percent of that term before the possibility of parole under the terms set down Friday by state Superior Court Judge William Daniel.

At approximately 8:30 p.m. on Saturday, December 12, 2014, Elizabeth Police Department patrol units rushed to the Oakwood Plaza housing complex on Parker Road on a report of a shooting, according to Union County Assistant Prosecutors Colleen Ruppert and Christina Fay, who prosecuted the case. There, investigators found 25-year-old Bilal Fullman of Woodbridge in a first-floor vestibule, having been shot eight times, Ruppert and Fay said.

An investigation involving the Union County Homicide Task Force, Elizabeth Police Department, Union County Sheriff’s Office Crime Scene Unit, and Union County Police Department Ballistics Unit resulted in Torres being identified as a suspect in the case, and he was apprehended in Virginia approximately two months after the shooting. Following a three-month trial and a half-day of jury deliberation that began earlier this year, Torres was convicted of all charges against him in early April 2018.

Judge Daniel described the shooting as “premeditated” and “cold-blooded,” as at trial, witnesses testified that Torres had noted his intent to kill Fullman.

Torres is currently serving a four-year sentence for a 2017 racketeering conviction, having been one of a dozen people arrested as a result of an unrelated Prosecutor’s Office’s Guns, Gangs, Drugs, and Violent Crimes Task Force investigation that culminated with charges filed in March 2015. The multi-month investigation targeted Elizabeth’s 111 N.H.C. (Neighborhood Crips) street gang and its engagement in a pattern of white-collar crime, specifically through strings of identity theft and credit card fraud.