A man accused of murdering his girlfriend by slashing her neck after an argument in their Hempstead apartment pleaded not guilty Wednesday following a grand jury indictment.
Prosecutors said Alan Espinoza, 26, remains jailed without bail on charges of second-degree murder and weapon possession in connection with the June death of Neyvin Espinal, 24.
Espinal worked as a waitress in a Hempstead cafe, and sent money home to her family in Honduras, which included her 7-year-old daughter, her former boss has said.
Police have said Espinoza and Espinal, whose body a female roommate found June 20 before calling 911, had been dating for a couple of months and living together about a month. Authorities have alleged the defendant used a "razor blade-type of cutter" to kill the victim.
Nassau acting District Attorney Madeline Singas said in a statement Wednesday that Espinal's murder was an example of the "horrific consequences" of domestic violence, and her office would work to make sure the defendant "pays a heavy price."
Espinoza's attorney, Joseph Lo Piccolo of Garden City, said he was investigating the case and planning a vigorous defense to the charges.