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Melissa Padilla was murdered by Steven Fortin — The Face Of Evil spotlights the case

Melissa Padilla and Steven Fortin photo
Melissa Padilla was brutally murdered by Steven Fortin while walking to a motel from a convenience store. Pic credit: Woodbridge Police Department/Family

The murder of Melissa Padilla by Steven Fortin is the subject of the latest episode of The Face Of Evil on Investigation Discovery.

On the night of August 11, 1994, Padilla, 25, walked to the Quick Chek convenience store, which was located at the intersection of U.S. Highway Route 1 North and Avenel Street in Woodbridge, New Jersey, to pick up some food for her family.

As she was returning to the Gem Motel, where she was living with her boyfriend, she ran into Fortin, who was angry after arguing and fighting with his girlfriend. Fortin took his anger out on Padilla and attacker her.

He brutally beat and bit Padilla before sexually assaulting the mother of four and strangling her to death. He then dumped her body in a nearby concrete pipe.

Dr. Marvin Schuster, a medical examiner, stated that Padilla sustained multiple injuries, including a broken nose and lacerations to her chin and left breast.

Padilla’s murder case went cold until April 1995, when Fortin was arrested for biting a Maine police officer on her chin and breast during a traffic stop. When investigators tested the bite marks on the officer, it matched the bite marks found on Padilla’s body.

Fortin denied killing Padilla. He told the judge he didn’t know her and that he had never seen before in his life.

However, in 2001, Fortin was convicted of killing Padilla and was sentenced to death, but it was overturned; therefore, he received a new trial. He was found guilty for the second time on November 29, 2007, and he received life in prison.

The Face Of Evil — Jaws Of Death, airs at 10/9c on Investigation Discovery.

Angelica N. Sumter is a freelance journalist who has covered true crime for more than 10 years. In addition to Monsters and Critics, her work... read more
Angelica N. Sumter

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