Elizabeth man convicted of Easter Sunday murder of girlfriend

A Union County jury has convicted an Elizabeth man of killing his girlfriend on Easter Sunday two years ago before fleeing the state with their infant daughter, Union County Prosecutor’s Office Investigations Supervisor John Esmerado announced Monday.

Following a two-week trial before state Superior Court Judge Lisa Miralles Walsh and jury deliberations spread across three days, a verdict of guilty was delivered Friday against 35-year-old Arturo Alomas for the murder of 26-year-old Trenice Johnson.

Police responding to the Mravlag Manor housing complex in Elizabeth at approximately 6 p.m. on Sunday, March 27, 2016 found Johnson dead in her apartment, according to Union County Assistant Prosecutor Armando Suarez, who prosecuted the case. An autopsy conducted the next day by the Union County Medical Examiner’s Office determined that the cause of Johnson’s death was manual neck compression, with the manner of death determined to be homicide, Suarez said.

A swift-moving joint investigation involving the Union County Homicide Task Force, Elizabeth Police Department, Union County Sheriff’s Office Identification Unit, North Carolina State Highway Patrol, and Rowan County (North Carolina) Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigation Division resulted in Alomas being identified as a suspect in the case. He was arrested later on the day of the homicide and charged with multiple criminal and traffic offenses after eluding police in North Carolina following an attempted traffic stop.

His 2-month-old daughter was found unharmed in the vehicle during the course of his arrest.

Alomas remained lodged in Union County Jail on $1 million bail while awaiting trial. Having seven prior indictable convictions on crimes including robbery, burglary, theft, eluding police, and aggravated assault, he will be subject to a term of up to life in state prison upon sentencing, which is tentatively scheduled for Friday, October 12, 2018.