EDISON – A township man was arrested on Thanksgiving and charged with fatally shooting a 25-year-old Edison resident earlier last week, Middlesex County Prosecutor Bruce J. Kaplan and Edison Police Chief Thomas J. Bryan announced.
Luis Padilla, 27, of Edison was charged with murder and possession of a handgun for an unlawful purpose in the death of Kevin Meisnest, who was killed in his Casey Avenue apartment on Nov. 23.
An investigation by Detective Frank Varga of the Edison Police Department and Sgt. Eleazar Ricardo and Investigator Michael Daniewicz, both of the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office, determined that Padilla went to a relative’s home in Brooklyn, N.Y. after he allegedly shot and killed Meisnest.
Padilla was brought to a precinct station in Brooklyn at about 10:30 p.m. on Nov. 24, and was charged at about 10:30 a.m. on Nov. 25.
Bail was set at $1 million in New Jersey by Superior Court Judge Dennis Nieves, who said the defendant must post the full amount before he can be released from custody.
Padilla currently is being held in New York but will be extradited to New Jersey, authorities said. No date for an extradition hearing has been set.
Police began the investigation after receiving a phone call at 10:37 a.m. on Nov. 24 from Meisnest’s employer, who was concerned when Meisnest, a tow truck driver, failed to report for work.
Edison police met the employer at Meisnest’s apartment, went inside and found Meisnest had been shot to death.
Authorities said that Meisnest appeared to be the victim of multiple gunshot wounds.
Investigators are asking anyone with information about the case to call Detective Varga of the Edison Police Department at 1-732-248-7400, or Investigator Daniewicz of the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office at 1-732-745-4018.
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