Boy found on porch saw father’s gruesome murder

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BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB)–It’s been 10 months since a little boy turned up alone on a porch and his parent’s bodies were found in a burned-out van.

In a story you’re seeing only on News 4, we have new details after speaking with the woman who is now raising the child.

Zenaida Colon held up the medical examiner’s report showing that her son, Miguel Valentin, was beaten and shot to death and then burned alongside his wife Nicole Merced off Tonawanda Street last September.

Their little son Noelvin apparently saw it all.

“He remembers a lot of things, he remembers he was stripped naked, he remembers they made him walk without shoes. He remembers that they didn’t feed him, they only gave him something to drink,” said Zenaida, Noelvin’s grandmother.

Days after he turned up alone on a porch, police released a video of two men running with Noelvin from the burning van. Someone recognized the men as possibly being connected to a drug house on Box Avenue.

It turns out, federal agents had already been running surveillance video on the vacant home on Box Avenue for months, and after reviewing that video, it led investigators to find the burned body of the third victim Dhamyl Roman.

“It’s been extremely difficult to try to see how we can expedite any information from the police which we have not been able to get,” Zenaida said.

News 4 first reported in December that federal investigators have tied James Reed and Jariel Cobb to the triple murder. They are in custody on a separate drug case but haven’t been formally charged in the murders.

Late last week, we asked US Attorney James Kennedy when we might hear an update.

He says, “It’s certainly a very active investigation and yes, I think you will he hearing something sooner rather than later.”

Noelvin is now four years old and us being raised by Zenaida.

“Noelvin was very attached to his parents. Every day, every night, he asks if they’re coming back and I have to explain to him. Then he remembers, ‘Oh yea, they got shot.’ I want justice George, I really want to see something. That’s not going to bring these three back, but it’s gonna bring me and the other families peace that these people won’t do this again to anybody.”

George Richert is an award-winning reporter who first joined the News 4 team in 1998, later returning in 2018. See more of his work here.

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