Tiffany Valiante was killed 5 years ago and her family has always believed foul play was involved. Now attorney Paul D’Amato has won a motion to have evidence tested for DNA marches for the first time in the cold case. Updates about the casde are available at https://damatolawfirm.com.
On March 1, 2021 the family of Tiffany Valiante got a break in the five-year-old cold case of her suspicious death as their lawyer, Paul D'Amato successfully motioned to reopen discovery, which was granted by a Superior Court judge in Atlantic County, NJ. As a result, the the New Jersey Transit Police Department has been ordered by Superior Court Judge John C. Porto to hand over several pieces of evidence to help solve the death of Tiffany Valiante, who was an 18-year-old resident of Mays Landing, NJ when she was struck by a New Jersey Transit commuter train less than a mile from her home in July 2015.
While her death was ruled a suicide, the Valiante family and D’Amato reject this theory, and strongly believe that foul play contributed to her passing. Updates about the case can be found at https://damatolawfirm.com.
D’Amato, founding partner of the of the D’Amato Law Firm in Egg Harbor Township, NJ, filed the complaint (Valiante v. N.J. Transit Police Department, Superior Court of NJ, Atlantic County, No. ATL-L-OO1840-19) two years ago, asking the Court to reopen discovery and order the transit agency to have DNA from the scene tested. This news is extremely beneficial to Tiffany’s case and proves that persistence pays off. Tiffany’s case is no longer a cold case and will continue to be investigated until answers are found.
As a result of the order, the NJ Transit Police must send several pieces of evidence to the DNA Diagnostics Center at the University of Toronto in Cincinnati, Ohio. These items include DNA and a DNA card, Tiffany’s bloodied ankle bracelet, headband, sneakers, and numerous other personal items recovered at or near the railroad tracks where she was struck. This is the first time that these items will be examined by an independent lab, which could be groundbreaking for the ongoing case. Additionally, the Valiante family has required that an axe and keychain be analyzed. The family learned from authorities two years ago that it would have to pay for the DNA tests, which could cost more than $10,000.
Testing will take about two weeks, and the Valiante family is anxiously awaiting the results. If foreign DNA is found on the items, it will be a turning point for the case and the Valiante family.
“We need to know how and why our precious daughter, who had everything to live for as she was about to start her college years, was killed, including whether she was brutally murdered then thrown onto the train tracks to conceal the killing,” Tiffany’s parents, Dianne F. Valiante and Stephen F. Valiante, explained. “Forensic experts have stated under oath Tiffany’s death was not suicide, and we remain committed to doing everything possible to answer the many troubling questions NJT investigators seemingly ignored in their rush to judgement so they could call Tiff’s death ‘closed’.”
The Valiantes also noted that Tiffany, whose mangled body was found partially clothed and barefoot, inexplicably was killed nearly five miles from the family home, yet her shoes were located more than a mile from the scene. The shorts she was wearing that night were never recovered.
The family has offered a $20,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the guilty party. “Somebody knows how Tiffany got from our house to the train tracks and we’re hoping the reward will motivate one or more people who know something to finally say something,” said the Valiantes.
Prior to her death, Tiffany was making plans to attend her first year at Mercy College (Dobbs Ferry, New York), where she was awarded an athletic scholarship. An all-conference volleyball player at Oakcrest High School and for the East Coast Crush Volleyball Club, she was heavily recruited by colleges and longed to play at the highest level - possibly someday in the Olympic games - while pursuing a career in criminal justice.
For more information about the Valiante case or the D'Amato Law Firm, visit https://damatolawfirm.com or call 609-926-3300.