Parole Denied to Lawrence Man Convicted of 1998 Murder
On June 28, 2013, the Massachusetts Parole Board denied parole to Elsido Pereyra, 48, who pled guilty to the second-degree murder of 17-year-old Richardo “Ricky” Torres, both of Lawrence.
On May 3, 1998, Torres’ then pregnant girlfriend purchased candy at the El Coqui store on Newbury Street in Lawrence, which the defendant owned. While in the store, the defendant’s brother and another man made disrespectful comments to Torres’ girlfriend. When she reported these comments to Torres, he went to the store to speak to the men. At this time, the defendant was present and a fight ensued on the sidewalk in front of the store. After a brief scuffle, the defendant shot Torres in the back. The defendant hid from the police after the shooting.
On March 2, 1999, the defendant pled guilty to second degree murder and was sentenced to life with the possibility of parole.
Essex Assistant District Attorney Paul C. Wagoner argued that parole should be denied because the defendant continues to portray the murder in self-serving terms and to blame the victim. In addition, ADA Wagoner pointed to the defendant’s inadequate post-parole plan to ensure he does not re-offend. “In opposing parole, the District Attorney acknowledges that the defendant has made steps in the right direction,” by strengthening his community connections and remaining nonviolent and substance-free while in prison, Wagoner said. “But the essential first step is missing. To assure the public that he will truly put his old life behind him, he must fully come to terms with his role in the murder. His current account minimizes his own culpability. And his parole release plan does not provide enough detail and assurances to adequately protect us from him.”
Pereyra was represented at the parole hearing by Attorney Eva Clark. He may apply for parole again in two years.