An investigation into the murder of Telford pizza shop owner has been closed. 60-year-old Antonio Lombardo, better known as Joe, was beaten to death more than two years ago while working at Lisa’s Pizza at Reliance Road and School Lane. Montgomery County District Attorney Risa Ferman says it was a complete mystery for the first several weeks.
“We simply had no idea. There was no one we could identify who had a motive to kill this man, who by every account was a wonderful individual, a wonderful boss, a family man, just a good, decent terrific human being.”
She says they learned in late March of 2009 that an illegal Guatemalan immigrant named Jose Pais was seen near the shop on the morning of the murder.
“He had worked here, we found he had made some cell phone calls from the neighborhood of the crime around the time that it happened, and we learned from a number of different sources that he had admitted to some others his involvement in this killing. The ultimate question of why Mr. Pais killed Mr. Lombardo is probably one that we will never be able to answer to anyone’s satisfaction.”
Ferman says Pais had made references to a perceived slight in something Lombardo said, but all they really know is that the victim was beaten violently while making coffee, and the killer escaped. She says they now have a copy of a death certificate showing that the killer died in November in a fall at a construction site in his native country.