R.I.P. Jacklyn... you were a good friend.... I know its been years since this happened... but i still think about you just about every day... I miss you kiddo.
By Michael E. Miller
By Ryan Yousefi
By Kyle Munzenrieder
By Sabrina Rodriguez
By Michael E. Miller
By Carlos Suarez De Jesus
By Luther Campbell
By Kyle Munzenrieder
It was 9:45 a.m. on October 11, 2009, when Juan Carlos Portieles parked his beat-up Toyota Camry on a quiet side street in Cutler Bay. Tall and heavyset, with close-cropped brown hair and traces of stubble on his jaw, the 30-year-old DJ walked several blocks to a cluster of condominiums with beige walls and red-tiled roofs.
He approached a nondescript door and knocked. Isabelle Congote answered. Twenty-four years old and pretty, with light brown hair and thin arched eyebrows, she wasn't happy to see Portieles. He had frantically called her house earlier that morning but wouldn't say much, only that he was in trouble, had gotten into a fight the previous night, and wanted to come over. Now he was pacing in the living room. His hazel-green eyes, usually half-closed and sunken into his face, were wide and bloodshot, as if he hadn't slept all night. He wouldn't stop cursing, and every now and then, he would say to no one in particular, "What am I going to do?" She thought he was still high or drunk from the night before.
Initially, he said a bunch of random guys had beaten him up at a gas station near Club Space in downtown Miami. But after a few minutes, Portieles changed his story. There had been no mugging. His fight had been with his 18-year-old girlfriend, Jaclyn Torrealba. They had been dancing at Space but began arguing inside the club and continued as he drove her home to Kendall. Finally, on a lonely stretch of road near Florida's Turnpike, he pulled the car over and began to punch and bite Torrealba. Then he put his hands around her throat and strangled her until she stopped moving. Her body, he said, was in the front seat of the Camry.
At first, Congote doubted he was serious. Then she noticed his hands, bruised and swollen. She saw the blood on his pants, the scratches on his face, and the cut on his lip. When he asked how to dispose of the body, there was nothing to suggest it was a sick practical joke — only the terrifying realization that the man in her house had killed a teenage girl only a few hours earlier.
For Miami's nightlife denizens, Jaclyn Torrealba's killer wasn't known as Juan Carlos Portieles. He was Seasunz, a DJ and promoter whose name seemed to be on every club and event flyer in the city. He had once been an honors student, but drugs and an inexplicable mental meltdown had transformed him into a perpetually drunk wannabe who would hand out his CDs to people waiting in line at the hottest nightclubs and hype himself as the next big thing. Then, this past July, a jury sent him to prison for life without parole. The man who had ruled the all-ages world had used his influence to seduce and kill a young woman. His arrest and the subsequent publicity dealt a death blow to a scene that once lit up America's best-known party metropolis: Miami, Florida.
Slide show: DJ Seasunz: Murder Ends Miami's All-Ages Club Scene.
At home in Hollywood, Eduardo Portieles paces in his living room and sobs. Shirtless and gaunt, with disheveled gray hair and round-rimmed glasses, he laments the life of Juan Carlos — the eldest of his two children — and the death of Jaclyn. "We miss her as if she were our own. I lost a daughter and a son," he weeps, tears gushing from his green eyes.
At the back of the house, in a room lined with floor-to-ceiling shelves full of vinyl records, stands a five-foot-tall file cabinet. The 54-year-old Portieles opens one of the drawers and pulls out a thick folder of loose-leaf paper. There are 96 sheets — diplomas, honor roll certificates, and elementary school spelling awards — all bearing Juan Carlos's name. Tears flowing, he flips through them, reading out each commendation and bit of praise. "You think this kid," he says, pausing on an award from Flagami Elementary School, "is the monster everyone has shown [on television]?"
Eduardo and his wife, Fidelia, didn't raise a monster, he says, alternating between broken English and rapid-fire Spanish. Their boy was a genius. He was reserved, quiet, and thoughtful. All he wanted to do was play music and bring people joy. Eduardo gestures at the vinyl LPs, some 14,000 in all. "He dedicated his whole life to this."
Juan Carlos was born January 21, 1979, in Sancti Spiritus, the capital city of a province in central Cuba. He was just over a year old when his parents left the country in the Mariel boatlift. They arrived in Miami on June 8, 1980, and moved around the city, finally settling in Hollywood in 2004 in a one-story pink stucco house purchased for $182,000 that Eduardo says Juan Carlos helped buy.
Throughout his childhood, he consistently impressed his teachers, from Flagami Elementary to Glades Middle School and up through Southwest Senior High. His transcript from Southwest is littered with A's, and he graduated in the top 5 percent of his class, 24th out of 515 students. Juan Carlos did so well, Eduardo says, that he could have finished high school early and gone to college at age 16.
But there was clearly a side not reflected in Eduardo's description of his son. A psychological evaluation conducted after his arrest for Jaclyn's murder revealed that, at 11 years old, Juan Carlos had been sexually molested by an adult. It happened only once, he told a court-appointed psychologist in March 2011; when the person tried to abuse him again, he stopped it. Juan Carlos said he knew his abuser, an older male, but refused to disclose the identity. For years, he said, he attempted to bury his shame and fear with drugs.
A self-described nerd in high school, Juan Carlos had been a model student, routinely taking honors classes and earning high marks. When he tried marijuana for the first time at 16 years old, he smoked only sporadically at first, but by age 18 had quickly ramped up to as many as ten joints per day, sometimes lacing them with cocaine. He claimed to have occasionally done crack for four to five years, dropped acid every weekend for three years, and also abused alcohol. In his adolescence and throughout his 20s, he experimented with heroin, crystal meth, Ecstasy, and prescription painkillers.
The result was dramatic. One psychological evaluation noted he "manifested deficits in all domains of cognitive functioning" and that he had "noticeable impairment in social and occupational functioning." But the drugs also numbed him to the sadness he felt after the molestation. He told one of three court-appointed psychologists, Dr. Sanford Jacobson, in March 2011 that "he learned that he could deal with things through drugs... they would obliterate the feelings that he had."
Both parents knew their son was struggling with abuse and begged him to kick his habits, but he refused. "I tried and tried and tried, but I couldn't control him," Eduardo says. "Drugs destroyed his life."
There was also anger in Juan Carlos. It surfaced in 1997, his final year at Southwest. At 18 years old, he was dating a 14-year-old freshman girl, but the relationship was faltering. So he became violent, punching her in the face and arms in January that year. A couple of months later, the girl's mother transferred her to another school. Juan Carlos didn't take the move well. On March 10, he went to her house in Sunset and knocked on her door, but, according to the arrest report, "The victim, not wanting to see or speak to the defendant, refused to answer." Enraged, he forced open her bedroom window. She told him to leave.
"The defendant then struck the victim several times on the face with a closed fist," the report states. "He then grabbed the victim by the sides of the head and with his thumbs pressed on the victim's eyes, causing heavy bruising and swelling. The defendant struck the victim several more times on the face before leaving."
The girl's parents called the police that night, and Juan Carlos was arrested for battery. Despite the attack's viciousness, he was able to enlist character witnesses, including Southwest faculty members. Karen Cohn, head of the gifted education department, wrote in a letter to the court, "Quite frankly, [Juan] is one of the few students that I would trust implicitly." Linda Greenfield, the department chair of language arts, wrote, "He is worth whatever investment we make in him."
Juan Carlos eventually pleaded no contest. Adjudication was withheld, and he was given one year of community control with two years' probation. He was told to have no further contact with the girl and her family, and not to consume any alcohol or drugs. The court-ordered psychological report seemed positive about his future. "He appears to be fully oriented as to the seriousness of his past behavior," it reads. "He did not present as a high risk for violence at this time."
Juan Carlos was remorseful. "I realize that I committed a mistake," he said in the report. "I've learned from that mistake, and that'll never happen again."
After high school, Portieles entered Florida International University, where he found a niche as a DJ and program director at the student radio station, Radiate FM (WRGP, 88.1). There, he chose the name that would become his identity in the clubs: Seasunz. He told his father the moniker reflected his spirituality. Water and the sun, he said, were elements that sustained life.
In 1999, Portieles landed an interview with the now-defunct 103.5 the Beat as a program director. When he didn't get the job, he told his father he was going to leave school and be a professional DJ.
"So I said to him: 'What, are you going to work construction with me?'" Eduardo recalls. "He said, 'No, I'm going to be famous.'"
In a city like Miami, finding success behind the decks is no easy task. "DJs in this town are a dime a dozen," says Dan Vidal, who runs a Miami nightlife website and has been a part of the scene for more than a decade. To stand out, Vidal says, you have to hustle constantly and get your name out. In that sense, Portieles was prolific. He networked with everyone in the scene, handing out flyers and CDs and trying to broker deals with printers, club owners, and other DJs.
Portieles also capitalized on an underserved market: all-ages parties. Thanks to a May 2000 ordinance that prohibited clubs in Miami Beach from allowing entry to anyone under the age of 21, only clubs in the city of Miami could host parties for teenagers. Although all-ages events weren't moneymakers — the inability to sell liquor cut significantly into the profits — most of the big-name Miami clubs staged occasional events geared toward high schoolers and younger college students to develop future clientele. Downtown hot spots such as Space, Nocturnal, Karu & Y, and Allure rented to promoters, who would pay the clubs up front. It was in this scene — DJing foam parties and overgrown homecoming dances — that Portieles got his start.
Unlike spinning in the neon glow of South Beach, DJing all-ages events provided little glitz and even less glamour. But Portieles was in his 20s, a college dropout, and living at home with no steady job, so the lure of any scene was irresistible. Every week, he would play shows for hundreds or thousands of partiers. As his profile grew, he attracted a circle of fellow DJs and promoters to do his bidding. According to Vidal, he also became popular by procuring alcohol and drugs for his teenage crowd.
It was during those years that Portieles's substance-abuse problems spiraled out of control. Some weekends he would drink a bottle of vodka a night and chase it with 30 or 40 hits of Ecstasy. Friends remember him drunk to the point of falling over or simply standing motionless in a corner while blankly staring out into space.
"With his general behavior, he had a big sign on his back where any sensible person would be like, Hands off, stay away, do not deal with this person," Vidal says. "I know it's Miami and everyone comes across as a little shady, but Seasunz definitely was more shady than most."
Javier Cadavid, who runs Project X Printing and was a former business partner of Portieles's, remembers an incident in 2007 when he and Portieles were pulled over by police in Hialeah. When the cop told Portieles that he looked like he used drugs, the DJ responded, "If you were molested as a kid, you would do drugs too, wouldn't you?" The two weren't arrested.
"He didn't really care what anybody said or about any of the rules," Cadavid says. "He was destined for disaster."
Portieles remained entrenched in the all-ages scene despite the fact that he was approaching 30 years old. "We noticed that he was taking an interest in... the younger girls," Cadavid says. "One thing is to do your business and go home, and [another] is to take an interest."
One particular focus was a girl he had met at G. Holmes Braddock High School while recruiting kids to hand out flyers for his events. Her name was Jaclyn Torrealba. She had a dancer's body, long black hair, and dimpled cheeks. She was an honors student, a cheerleader, and an aspiring lawyer. And when the 28-year-old Seasunz began wooing her in the spring of 2007, she was a month shy of her 16th birthday.
Pablo Torrealba knows why his daughter fell for a man nearly twice her age: the allure of a world she had always wanted to be a part of.
"These are impressionable kids," says the 49-year-old, who teaches biology at Braddock High. "These are kids who want to fit in, be popular, be part of a hip crowd. Imagine you meet somebody who can give you access to clubs, where you'll be next to the most popular person there, be right in the VIP sections, no line, treated like royalty. At that age, what teenager wouldn't fall for that?"
Jaclyn was an only child, and at 2 years old, her parents divorced. But Pablo and his wife, Vilma Castro, remained friendly, and their daughter spent equal time with each of them. Pablo was doting and generous. When Jaclyn was 9 years old, the two wiled away an entire afternoon inside an arcade at the Shops of Sunset Place, playing all the games to collect tickets so they could buy her favorite thing: a Beanie Baby. With Vilma, she would go shopping and talk about the boys she liked and the classes she was taking.
"She didn't rebel or disrespect us," Pablo says. "I couldn't be the least bit disappointed with who Jaclyn was."
Jaclyn also loved to dance. Her parents encouraged her to be social, and with her friends, the 15-year-old began to explore the club world by going to all-ages events and festivals. Then she met Portieles.
The DJ was instantly smitten. Soon after they started dating, he sent her a love letter in which he wrote, "Before I met you, I thought I knew what love was... But it was not until I met [you] that I knew I finally really grasped the concept of the word love and the powers that live within love." He wrote that their relationship was "the greatest love story ever told to mankind."
It was a story that Jaclyn's parents would try to end quickly. After they found out about the relationship, Vilma did a background check on Portieles and discovered the battery charge and a pair of minor drug convictions for pot and Ecstasy possession. Then there was the age gap. She and Pablo forbade their daughter from seeing Portieles again, and on August 1, 2007, they sent him a certified cease-and-desist letter through a family attorney. "If you make any attempt to initiate further contact with this minor, we will pursue any and all legal remedies at our disposal to the fullest extent of the law," the letter stated.
"We thought we had dodged a bullet," Pablo says.
But Portieles didn't take the letter to heart, and Jaclyn refused to end the relationship. The two continued to see each other in secret for the next two years. Though she was grounded for three months as punishment for not telling her parents about Portieles, Jaclyn quickly returned to the all-ages scene.
It was a potentially dangerous time to be out and about in Miami. In 2009, the year Jaclyn died, nearly a dozen people were killed in or outside the city's clubs. In March, three people were shot outside Space, a club Portieles regularly played. In September, a young woman was shot in her car in the same area. There was a rash of shootings and stabbings in Miami Beach that summer, and a shooting outside a Miami Gardens club in March that wounded five people. That violence has decreased in the years since.
But Jaclyn's parents hoped she would stay safe if they kept an eye on her and trusted her judgment. "She wasn't doing anything a million other kids didn't do," her father says. "One of the most difficult things for any parent is that you teach them the best you can, and then you have to let them go. You can't supervise them every single minute."
Jaclyn never suspected anything was wrong with her boyfriend. She would regularly text him declarations of love, which he would unfailingly return. The two talked constantly. In September 2009, they placed nearly 250 calls to one another, court records show. Jaclyn's friends didn't see anything troubling. To them, Portieles was the gregarious and generous Seasunz, who would drive them around the city and get them into clubs.
But as Portieles's relationship with Jaclyn progressed, his career stalled. After 2006, he struggled to get work because clubs became less interested in all-ages parties. Police and parents, wary of kids being exposed to alcohol and possibly worse, paid more attention to the events.
"Early part of the last decade, it was easy [to do an all-ages party]," says Vidal, the club scene veteran. "But as the legal situation changed, it became more of a risk."
Portieles attempted to break into the 21-and-up crowd, promoting events at Nocturnal in downtown Miami and Voodoo Lounge in Fort Lauderdale, but his efforts frequently went nowhere. "He got himself pigeonholed as the guy who threw all the underage parties," Vidal says. "Some people did give him chances, but he didn't produce for the adult market, so he fell back to what he knew."
Still, Portieles eked out enough work — an opening slot for the Crystal Method, a popular electronic group, in May 2009, or a promoter job with Ultra Music Festival — to keep things going. And he scored a gig in summer 2009 that he believed would make his career: an opening spot for Tiësto, a superstar DJ in the electronic dance music world, for an October 17 show in Fort Lauderdale at the Don Taft University Center Arena at Nova Southeastern University. At 30 years old and known for little else but DJing parties for high schoolers, Portieles must have felt like it was his last chance.
But a week before it was scheduled to go on, the show was canceled due to poor ticket sales. Tiësto was already slated for a second show that night at LIV in South Beach; Portieles wasn't added to the bill for that.
Just as Portieles's life in music was coming to a grinding halt, his relationship with Jaclyn was also deteriorating. After graduating from Braddock in June 2009, she enrolled at FIU. The two were on and off throughout that year. They fought frequently via text message, and friends warned her to be wary. Nonetheless, she wanted to spend time with him. Portieles even asked her to be a choreographer for the Tiësto show. On October 10, the two made plans to see Mark Knight, a DJ, at Space.
That night, Jaclyn dressed for a night out and then told her father she was leaving.
"I was sitting right here," Pablo Torrealba says, leaning back slightly in a beige leather chair in his living room. "We talked. She bent down and hugged me and kissed me. I told her to call me when she got there, to be safe. She said, 'Bye, Papi, and good night.'"
That was the last time he would see his daughter alive.
Around 6:30 p.m. on October 11, Portieles walked into the Miami-Dade Police Department's Midwest District Station in Doral and told the officer on duty, Oscar Perez, that he wanted to turn himself in. When Perez asked why, Portieles's response was simple.
"He says, 'Well, I've been driving around for the past three hours with my girlfriend, dead, in the car, and I don't know what else to do,'" Perez recalls.
A few hours earlier, Pablo Torrealba had contacted the police to report his daughter missing. All morning, her friends and family had been trying unsuccessfully to call her. After two Miami-Dade officers met with Pablo, they issued an all-points bulletin for the last person Jaclyn's friends had seen her with: Juan Carlos Portieles.
When the DJ stumbled into the station and told Officer Perez there was a dead girl in his car, the cop asked for his name. He responded, "Juan Carlos." The police had their man.
Police hurried outside to the car and found a girl with curly black hair, dressed in jeans pulled slightly down her hips and a black tank top, face-down on the front seat, kneeling on the floorboard. Bruises covered the left side of her body; bite marks dotted her left arm and shoulder. There were promotional flyers, coins, and blood everywhere — on the passenger seat, rear seats, and the right rear door handle, even on a copy of New Times. They also found pieces of Jaclyn's red acrylic nails, broken off in her fight with Portieles, littering the back seat.
Two hours later, Detectives Rolando de la Osa and Miguel Dominguez of the Miami-Dade homicide squad began an interrogation of their murder suspect. At first, he was cooperative, even agreeing to talk without a lawyer present. But he claimed to be ignorant of almost everything: where he had been that night, whether he'd been drinking, even where he'd woken up the day before.
He told detectives that he and Jaclyn had driven around Saturday night, possibly drinking. He had blacked out at some point and woken up in his car Sunday morning in Kendall. After spotting Jaclyn's body, he panicked, drove around aimlessly for a few hours, and then decided to go to the police.
The detectives knew Portieles was lying. They had already received a call from Isabelle Congote about the visit earlier that day. Portieles had also requested help from another friend, Gabriel Molina, who had also contacted police. When the detectives confronted the DJ, he answered, "Well, there's no hiding this now."
Then he told them everything he knew. On October 10, he and Jaclyn had agreed to meet in the parking lot of the Los Perros Restaurant on Bird Road at SW 133rd Avenue, where she left her car. From there, they went to Space. They arrived around 2 a.m. and soon began to argue. She slapped him in the face, he claimed, and he decided the night was over. They left at roughly 3 a.m.
In the car, he asked questions, but she wouldn't respond. "My intentions were honestly to drive her back to her car, but that silent treatment really pissed me the fuck off," Portieles told detectives.
When Portieles reached the parking lot, he didn't stop the car. She asked where they were going. In a rage, he turned and said, "Oh, now you want to talk to me, bitch!" He continued to drive in circles near Florida's Turnpike until he reached a grassy cul-de-sac at SW 107th Avenue and 140th Street, near a canal. There, he told detectives, he pulled the car over, and the fight began.
"Mr. Portieles explained that they began punching each other, over ten times, while they were in the front seat of the vehicle," the detectives' report states. "Mr. Portieles indicated the fight ended up in the back seat of the vehicle, where he was trying to defend himself and, at the same time, not hurt the victim. Mr. Portieles said he attempted to pull down the victim's pants to her knees so that she could not kick him any more... He stated he grabbed her by her hands. Mr. Portieles related, 'I punched her, bit her, pulled her hair. I tried everything. She hit me with everything. I grabbed her by the throat and choked her until she stopped moving.'"
Winded, Portieles sat back in the rear passenger seats and rested. After 30 minutes, he moved her to the front seat and then sat in the car for another hour or two. Once the sun began to rise, he called Isabelle Congote and drove away.
The DJ spent the rest of the morning and afternoon looking for a solution. He drove to Congote's apartment and then to the Southland Mall to talk to an uncle, Rey. Portieles asked whether he should burn the car with Jaclyn's body in it or throw her corpse into the Everglades. Rey advised him to turn himself in. Next he went to Gabriel Molina's apartment in Homestead, where for a third time he confessed to the murder. Then he drove around Miami for three hours, Jaclyn's body still next to him, trying to figure out what to do. At one point, he told detectives, he took off the black button-up shirt he was wearing and covered her with it because "she was looking 'disgustingly gruesome.'"
Portieles finished his confession at 4 a.m. October 12, seven hours after he'd begun. The detectives wanted him to take them to the crime scene, but he asked to nap until morning. They agreed, and for the first time in two days, Portieles slept, lying down on the interview room floor.
Soon after, four Miami-Dade detectives went to the house of Pablo Torrealba, six hours after they'd called him to say they had news about Jaclyn. He already knew what they were going to tell him, but nevertheless found himself struggling to stay composed as they talked. After the detectives described the confession, Torrealba felt anger, pain, and sadness.
"It's surreal," he says. "This is not supposed to happen. You don't think something like that is ever going to touch you."
Vilma Castro was also waiting for news about Jaclyn. On Sunday, she had made a cold pasta-and-chicken dish, one of the youngster's favorites, for a dinner they were supposed to have. When she learned what had happened to her daughter, she took the food and threw it away. She hasn't been able to cook anything since that day almost three years ago.
The clubs that gave Portieles his fame — Space, Nocturnal, Allure, and others — are either gone or have left the all-ages game. In the immediate wake of the murder, clubs canceled their under-21 events and didn't book any for months. Companies such as Committee Entertainment had already been expanding into the all-ages market with outdoor concerts and events like Dayglow. The industry permanently shifted to them.
"All-ages is no longer a winning game for clubs," Vidal says.
In Pablo Torrealba's house on SW 144th Place, Jaclyn's bedroom remains almost exactly as it was when she lived there. There's a bed, a nightstand, and a cabinet that holds an old, bulky TV set. A dresser and a desk are each covered in family photos and Beanie Babies. On the sea-foam-green walls hang more photos from all stages of Jaclyn's life: childhood, high school, and trips with her father to New York City, Disney World, and Alaska. As he picks up a digital photo frame and watches picture after picture of Jaclyn go by, he wonders whether he could have done more to save her.
"I wish I'd gone to him," Torrealba says of Portieles. "I wish I'd kicked down his door, shown him my face. But I didn't, because I never thought anything like this could happen."
In Vilma Castro's home on SW 147th Path, portraits of Jaclyn adorn every room. The girl's bedroom at this house also has light-green walls, but aside from photos and some trophies on a shelf, it sits empty. Castro didn't buy the place until December 2009; her daughter had helped her pick it out but had never gotten the chance to spend a single night in the room she had chosen.
Almost three years passed between Portieles's confession and his trial, while the State Attorney's Office compiled mountains of text and forensic evidence. The DJ's defense tried to paint Jaclyn as a party girl who drank and did drugs, and alleged the crime had been an accident in the heat of passion. But after three days of testimony and only four hours of deliberation, the jury didn't buy the excuses. It found Portieles guilty of first-degree murder. The next day, he received his sentence: life in prison without parole.
Jaclyn's friends and family rejoiced. But both Pablo and Vilma noticed that, when the verdict was announced, Portieles simply stared straight ahead, eyes empty. During the sentencing, he began to apologize but threw in several long discourses on how true love would conquer all. When Pablo took the stand to address Portieles, he held nothing back.
"I told him that he had destroyed the most wonderful thing I had in my life without remorse or regret," he says. "I told him that I pitied him. I had something good for 18 years, and he is never going to know what it's going to be like to have a child or be a father. He's going to miss out on a love he'll never understand."
Eduardo Portieles believes there is a true life beyond this world for his son. "He told me he was facing two judges," Eduardo says, "one on Earth and one in Heaven."
His son has converted in prison and talks every day on the phone with his father about spirituality. To this day, Juan Carlos has never told his parents why he killed Jaclyn or even what happened that night. "There is no justification for what he did," Eduardo says. "He killed a girl I loved like the daughter I never had."
But the two lives he believes were lost have created something more powerful. "This girl's death saved my life," he says. "Jaclyn was the sacrifice of the lamb. Without her death, I would not be a believer." He begins to cry. "She is in my heart, and I know the Lord has her in a safe place."
Then he falls to his knees. "Every night, I pray for her, just like this." He clasps his hands and thrusts them toward the sky. Tears still running down his cheeks, he rises to his feet. "Hopefully this monstrous crime will bring light to the world."
R.I.P. Jacklyn... you were a good friend.... I know its been years since this happened... but i still think about you just about every day... I miss you kiddo.
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This article was incredibly insensitive! I REALLY hope it’s not true that the photo is the actual photo of young Jackie’s hand. This is not CSI Miami. These are real people. Their ONLY daughter. These are extremely devoted and caring parents. To publish this kind of amateur article is just completely tactless and crude. Extremely disturbing for the writer to include Eduardo's quote. When I read she "was the sacrifice of the lamb" I literally felt sick to my stomach so I can only imagine how her mother felt. The ONLY thing I will mention is I do like that the writer included some of Portieles’s history. I feel the story if anything should have been more focused on the workings of a psychotic mind. We need more information on why these crimes happen, what they look for in their victims, what drives people to do these things, what kind of families produce these kinds of behaviors, how can we prevent more abuse. So many abusers have been abused. I think as a community we not only have to bring awareness to abuse but we need to bring awareness as to why people abuse, the traits they exhibit so we can spot these people out and prevent these things from happening. We need more counselors, therapy centers. So many people are dealing with past abuse issues (I know so many people that have been abused and you never know because people keep their secrets hidden). So many people probably just do not know where to turn and when you do look for counseling they are sometimes very expensive. Abuse turns into pain and fear, pain into anger and out of anger people commit the most atrocious crimes. We all deal with our issues differently. Many people will be abused and will never grow up to hurt another but that hidden pain remains and causes them to lash out, some worse than others. My heart cries out for her parents. This story is so near to my heart. Her father was my science teacher in middle school. Her mother lives only blocks from my house, I graduated from Braddock, I studied political science at FIU. I remember being Jackie's age and my parents forbidding me to date someone. It's been 10 years since then and now as an adult I see all my mistakes. You think your parents don't know what they are talking about but they do. They are the ONLY ones that will ALWAYS look out for you. At 18 you think you are finally an adult, the world is at your feet, so many possibilities. You want to do it all, see it all. But the world is also a scary place. You need to protect yourself at all times. Form packs with your friends and codes when you go out. In my group we would come together and always leave together. What you choose to do after would be on you but take care of your friends. Wait to see them walk into their houses to leave when dropping them off, never leave a friend behind, never let a friend leave with a guy, ALWAYS watch your drinks, never leave a drink unattended and cover your drink with your hand. So many people out there slip things into drinks without you even realizing it. Always be aware of your surroundings. And please young people LOOK OUT FOR YOUR FRIENDS. If you think your friend is in a bad situation, talk to an adult or the person’s parent. You might lose a friend for a few weeks, but not for a lifetime. So many good kids that come from good homes do not understand that there are BAD PEOPLE out there. Whether they are bad because they have been abused or bad because that’s what’s inside them they are not like you. There are people that come from dark places, have experienced things you would never dream of. Do not think you can be a savior. Look at a person’s history, if they have hurt someone in the past, they can do it again. To the parents of Jackie, may god be with you both. From all the articles we all can tell that you are both DEDICATED, AMAZING and LOVING parents. You did everything you could to protect your daughter and raise her right. In an instant, a monster took it all away. If only the world had more parents and people like you. My thoughts are always with you and I will always carry prayers in my heart for you both. May god somehow give you peace. New Times: please release a correction and clarification for the careless reporting of inaccurate facts, improper misquotes and bias misrepresentations.
Miami New Times has definitely choose to be a yellow journalistic kind of paper, where the gore, scandalous, promiscuous, bloody, violent, criminal, deaths, drugs, prostitution, slandering storing get to be prominently treated and display here. What one day started as an "alternative voice" in Miami journalism has become a sore eye in this city of ours; if this is the best alternative journalism a large metropolis like Miami has to offer, we are really in trouble.
Miami New Times has gotten to a new low. The picture of the dead girl, (worst if its the actual hand of the dead lady) is so crass, insensitive and low, I have no words to describe it.
Miami New Times you really need to get a check out. You are becoming an annoying and painful embarras to the resident of Miami Dade County.
Its truly disturbing the way this article has been written. The mere fact that something as simple as the sentencing was wrong truly comes to show how unprofessional the author is. The fact that you disrespected my friend's family and put a picture of her deceased hand is by far one of the rudest things you have done to the Torrealba family. At first I though it was merely a picture trying to get an emotional appeal from its readers and then I come to find out that its actually her hand! That is so disrespectful and uncalled for! There were enough pictures included in the article as it is, and there was no need to show Jackie in that light. The focus on this article did in fact bring light to Seasunz demented life, but it saddens me that the accounts spoken about in this article seem to merely try to justify his actions, when there is clearly no justification for what he did. Quoting the fact that he considered Jaclyn's death his salvation is tearing up so many family members and friends, and there was absolutely no sympathy for them when you though it would be okay to post all the crazy things him and his father told you. The article's title is deceiving as well, making it seem as if your goal was to enlighten people about the dangers of the "all age" club scene, yet all you simply did was talk about Seasunz and his life. This is such a bias article, that absolutely shined no light on Jackie and all the good things she did and the good person she was. Seeing all these upset comments should truly shine some light for the publisher for assigning such a cruel and unprofessional person, who did not comply with his supposed goal for this article, twisting words and remarks and making Seasunz look like a mere victim of abuse when in fact, he was simply INSANE!!!! And is clearly insane if these are all the things he was telling you! What a twisted way to present a story.
so messed up. it was all downhill from the get go. everyone needs to be wary of who they choose to surround themselves with and what environment they meddle in.
This article is truly disturbing. I don't know how Mr. Jon Taylor had the audacity to write this and Miami New Times to publish this! First of all, this nowhere nearly represents the truth to what happened to my best friend Jackie. I thought this article was suppose to represent ACTUAL FACTS along with alerting the public of the real dangers that are out there; that there are sick sociopaths out there! Everything from the title to the picture used in this piece of "writing" is insulting. A murder didn't kill a nightlife scene (as it does still exist out there!) A murder involved my friend and affected many lives she left behind. The ones who DO truly and sincerely love and miss her... Not the psychos in the monster's family who took her life! How dare you, JON, publish his father saying he misses and loved Jackie as a daughter he never had?! Even if that was part of his conversation with you, you should have been a bit more professional. That is insulting and hurtful to Jackie's family and friends!! They have not the least idea of how painful it is to not have Jackie amongst us anymore! I can't believe Seasunz's whole life was written about, as if it were relevant to this case. I also cannot believe this article was so biased into only showing one side of not even the crime he committed, but of his psychotic relatives. It is a true shame Jackie's family and friends ever gave this writer the time of day and above all, the TRUST to write about her to get a good message to the youth across. For this piece of junk, it was honestly better left unwritten. Complete unprofessionalism from this agency and its writer caused misleading information and ended up not getting the message out: which again, are the dangers that are lurking in all age club scenes! Next time, at least get your facts straight Taylor, because for the record, you weren't even able to get the sentencing accurately.
The Miami New Times should be ashamed of publishing a love letter to a killer instead of an accurate account of a senseless tragedy. I am shocked that the author would choose to end this article with a melodramatic, masturbatory, and extremely callous quotation from the defendant's obviously derranged father. While the New Times and its mentally deficient staff writers usually save their ire and irony for various local law enforcement agencies, its nice to see that no story, no matter how recent or painful, is immune from poor, one - sided reporting designed to inflame the community it purports to inform. Miami and the victim's family deserve better.
No sympathy for this drug by choice user junkie! If you got raped now that your a grown man why not kill the guy who raped you? Love? Oh your gonna get plenty of loving in jail now big boy, you had a choice and made all the bad one's. Feel bad for the victim's parents who did everything possible in a legal way to try and save their daughter, sometimes you need other alternatives in taking care of the problem :)
I don't comprehend the contempt some of the users feel towards this article. The writer did a great job in providing a candid, unsympathetic, accurate report on not only the crime but the perpetrator, (of course for the exception of the sentencing of the crime). Just because the article did not create a sympathy sob story on behalf of the victim does not merit criticism for bad journalism, it's not their jobs. Nor does it make the story or the crime any less significant. However, I do share the belief more should have been said on the overall all ages party scene in Miami and the dangers it creates for gullible and impressionable youths.
To the Miami Times, first I would like to say that, this reporter needs to be dismissed. Along with the editor that aloud this one sided story to be printed. This story should of been about a lovely sweet young lady who's young life was tragically taken from her and from her parents that she adored and they in turn adored her. Instead we read about the predator, his family, & his life... Really ? You didn't even get the facts right? It was painful read, a photo that should of never been public. Could you at the very least respected the young woman we lost? As far as he DJ, I won't refer to him by name, he got enough publicity from you. He had choices, when he was young, and when he was an adult, he choose the path he took. This article was disturbing on so many levels. Jon Tayler you should be ashamed of yourself how unprofessional & how intensitive to the Torrealba/Castro family. You did no justice to this story. My prayers are for Jackie and her family she can rest in peace now. I thank god that you were not on that jury ~ Justice 4 Jackie was served and this person will never harm another. For you young ladies out there, listen to your parents, listen to your friends when they see something that just doesn't seem right. Jackie taught us all a very big lesson.
Wow this article is really disturbing. I felt compelled to register an account not to just bash this poor excuse of flesh for the unforgivable act he committed..but also to bring light to this Jon Tayler and his New Times editor...Even before reading I stopped at the HEADLINE without having any knowledge to anything or anyone in this article and thought immediately " Wow..a young girl was murdered and all this title wants to reflect is the death of the ALL AGES scene????? I cram to understand the insensitivity people have these days. One day you guys will learn the hard way on how you make people feel with these articles. My sympathies are to Jackies parents they seem like such great parents . My last comment is about the Portieles family...how sad, ignorant and incapable of raising a child these people are. Who cares what grades Juan Carlos got in Elementary!! The question is WHAT DID YOU DO his teenage/semi-adult years??????? The PORTIELES family is a failure to society. This JUAN CARLOS idiot drove to several family members homes TOLD THEM about HIS ACTIONS and none of them reported him???? He had to drive around for hours then turn himself in????!!!!!!! Eduardo Portieles...you sir are a FAILURE to FATHERHOOD...30 years old letting him do whatever he wants all drugged up coming home to mommy and daddy???? "This girl's death saved my life," he says. "Jaclyn was the sacrifice of the lamb. Without her death, I would not be a believer." He begins to cry. "She is in my heart, and I know the Lord has her in a safe place." WHAT PLANET are the PORTIELES from??? How could you call Jaclyn a Sacrifice to the Lamb??? I've heart it all!!!! JUAN CARLOS deserves to die and not live. The LORD forgives but does not forget. Juan Carlos could pray ALL HE WANTS but his destiny has been set and there are no All ages parties in the after life. EDuardo you can cry every minute for the rest of your life and no sympathy will be felt.
The real victims are Jaclyns family and friends. May God bless you guys and continue to provide strength
As a member of the jury who sentenced Juan Carlos to FIRST DEGREE murder, I swore to myself once we read our verdict, I would never read/speak/think about this tragedy ever again. And unfortunately, today I found myself engulfed in this article. You do NO justice for anyone with this article, not for Jackie not for Juan Carlos and certainly not for their respective families. This is a tragedy, a loss of life, a young life and to think you can't even get his sentencing straight is beyond words. If any readers are interested in this tragedy, wait for the court transcripts to become available and really educate yourselves on the matter. This article has left a horrible taste in my mouth and The Miami New Times has lost a devote reader.
"Dear Jon, I read the story and I found it hard to read. First, the picture of Jackie's deceased hand on the article was terrible and hurtful to me. You did not respect Jackie nor her family, I found it tasteless and uncalled for to publish this article with her deceased hand in front view. Secondly, you wrote the wrong verdict in the article. He was convicted of 1st DEGREE MURDER without Parole not Second Degree! Why can't publisher's get a simple verdict right is out of my knowledge due to all of the research done on a case? I never told you that we encouraged Jackie to socialize. My exact words were, "I placed her in cheer and dance, at the age of 8, so she could have a positive outlet. To make her a well rounded individual." And finally, as usual, the focus is on the wrong (the monster who murdered my daughter and his crazy family) this article disappointed me. You never looked into how predators lure young teens and what safety issues arise in order to teach others appropriate information for safety and warning signs. How these all ages club NEVER look into the independent contractors background for criminal/felony offenses to work in the clubs with minors. I thought you came to hear both sides of the story but you actually just wrote about one side. Yes, you added some of Pablo's statements but even the headline; DJ Seasunz: A Murder Kills a Nightlife Scene! No he MURDERED MY DAUGHTER!!!!!!!!!! All ages clubs are still here and will be here because of teens wanting to go out to have fun. But, No!!! He Murdered Jackie Torrealba my daughter who I love and cherish. Who I find hard to live without! Who is NOT here! This monster is a murderer! He lives and my daughter is dead because of him! It was proven in the court that they were not a couple by various witnesses also hence, again NOT Jackie's side of the story! And overall, this monsters father is just as crazy as the monster who murdered my daughter! What he said in your article is bizarre! Your research was complete on one side of the story...Portieles side. But, Jackie Torrealba's side was missing. Obviously, it doesn't get the ratings your editor and you, the publisher would like but our family has been destroyed and this endless misery just added one more experience to this pile..yours." " May Jackie rest in Peace and may she know that she was also there witnessing the trial and she celebrated her verdict; 1ST DEGREE MURDER W/O PAROLE towards this MONSTER! This is what GOD and Jackie wanted Justice for Jackie and A LIFE SENTENCE FOR THIS MONSTER! NO FORGIVENESS...NOT HERE OR IN HEAVEN AS THIS CREEP THINKS!" VILMA CASTRO (JACKIE'S MOTHER)
"This girl's death saved my life," he says. "Jaclyn was the sacrifice of the lamb." " - this is the stupidest shi* I've read in my life, this statement is a disrespect to Jaclyn.
sad... hits too close to home for me... my prayers goes out to the victim and everyone who's been hurt by this awful tragedy
I hope he some how reads this fuk u seasunz I hated that mofo b4 this ever happened he a douchebag I used to call his radio show to confront him live on air all the time
I hope he some how reads this fuk u seasunz I hated that mofo b4 this ever happened he a douchebag I used to call his radio show to confront him live on air all the time
What sickens me the most about this tragedy, is his fathers justification for the death of this young girl. "This girl's death saved my life," he says. "Jaclyn was the sacrifice of the lamb. Without her death, I would not be a believer." He begins to cry. "She is in my heart, and I know the Lord has her in a safe place." Really? Maybe you could've saved your life with sacrificing the life of another!
@erika-215 You know, you talk about it being one-sided but only because it wrote about both sides. If you got what you wanted, and he wrote only about how great your friend was, then it WOULD BE a one-sided article. This story has touched me and I can't even fathom the thought but this is journalism, revealing truths. While I do not know either the victim or the suspect, I feel the writer did a good job of capturing both aspects. Anyone in their right mind can understand that when the father of the suspect (a murderer) says he "lost the daughter he never had" the author is respectfully calling him a lunatic. Dont be so mean to the writer. Sympathy for your friend and her family has been on my mind since I read this article the other day.
For the record, no one is asking for sympathy! And you clearly are just as clueless as this writer because a lot in this article is not "accurate," as you claim it to be. Your ignorant comments are NOT needed. :)
This is a subjective, qualitative article by the publisher. It is not to request sympothy but to bring out the real story. The real story is not in this article but in the docets of the court. It is not an accurate account of the murder. Obviously, this magazine are for hipters looking for club scene, restauranct, etc... This is a beginner publisher who did not comprehend or knew how to bring this story to reality, to knowledge, and to have a nuetral unsympathetic report (as you state); this is why the title of the article is so disturbing and inappropriate. And, how it is a one sided event of the research...Portielies bizarre families. Clubs are still here especially all ages club which is what this magazine promotes therefore, in saying this, it is understood the reason for the "unfelt title, the inappropriate picture of a young girls death, and the completely wrong sentencing provided," represents the insufficiency of the reporter. I have ended this conversation as it does no good to elaborate how pathetic this article is and will stop reading and obviously use this to bring awareness to the poor publishers ethical and professional persona. Remember, one person can bring awareness, continuous awareness can bring a business down, and then its reputation as I (Vilma Castro Torrealba) will do. Anyone who is asked to sit down with any of the publishers from THE MIAMI NEWS TIME should never accept it as these articles are for amature publishers. Stay with advertising for the club scenes, restaurants, business ads, and wisky making which is what your magazine is all about.
@polorican81276 typical gushy espanol BS. you ought to hear the cr@p they spew when hitting on a girl.
"This girl's death saved my life," he says. "Jaclyn was the sacrifice of the lamb. Without her death, I would not be a believer." This is very disturbing to me and I am asssuming to those who read this article. They are all delinquents, liers, and cowards. JPortieles MURDERED my only child, she had just turned 18, wanting to be alone, wanting to study at FIU, and major in law. She was too young to understand the manipulation and the control a freak like Portieles could have on her (Remember he was 30 at the time). She never thought someone could do the unthinkable to her (and especially an adult). I hope, somehow, by our conversations about this article there are young teens out there who can be helped, who might be in a similar situation and FOR THEM TO SPEAK OUT! Don't be afraid to speak out and tell the ADULTS that love you, the most, what you are going through because they will be the ones left with the anguish, the pain, the loss, and thier own death sentence if they loss you. Because althought JPortieles is in jail ... we, Jackie's parents are living our own sentence of loss, of emptiness, and despare. There is no life without our Jackie and to live this pain is torturous for the rest of our lives. An advice to teens/young adults; do not count on your friends to help you. They are in their own world of issues. They think about themselves. Please speak up and if you have a person who is or appears to be obsessed with you SPEAK UP! Thank you POLORICAN*1276, for your comments and for your kindness. May GOD also bless you and yours. Vilma Castro Torrealba (Jackie's mom).
Thank you for your kind words and for the INTELLIGENT comments you wrote. Our sadness is felt deeply and the horror of it all continues just for a stupid magazine and an editior and a publisher! Fortunate are the ones that will never go through our tragedy. I wish NO PARENT what we are living...it is hell! Reading about these crazy people makes me angry, sad, and in disbelief of how a family can be SO DISFUNCTIONAL!
I thank you for your words, for your attentiveness in court, and for the verdict. You all made the right choice. This MONSTER would have murdered again. He has a repetitive, abusive demeanor without remorse. When he had a chance to speak to us he said, "I could have done worse to her." that was his forgiveness. It was horrible! A sociopath! This article is just for sensationalism and not for real, informative, intelligent, reporting. Thank you again, Vilma Castro Torrealba (Jackie's mom).
@cvilma104 I'm sorry you had to read this also. I know first-hand how disgusting, twisted, and outright WRONG these "news" accounts of tragedies are. Please try not to look at any of the garbage people post online. Most of them have no idea how the people in real life feel - nor do they care.
I'm glad they got this guy behind bars for life, but I know it's no consolation for anyone who loved your daughter. As a mother, I can't even imagine the pain.
We are all very sorry for your loss. That said, you should try staying away from the web stories about your daughter's murder. You will not find the answers you are looking for... because there are none. The internet will only serve to frustrate you even more.
I hope that one day you and Pablo are able to find peace.
this family is bizzare! and this MONSTER is evil. Glad for the verdict; 1st degree murder w/o parole! Justice for Jackie!
no one has the right to MURDER! Miss you Jackie. Mom loves you!
@erika-215 Well then clarify for us where this article is inaccurate. Other sources seem to provide similar accounts of the crime
What about his statement : " Without her death , I would not be a believer " ? Can this sick old man stop making everything about him and his monster of a son? A believer of what you mean, you imbecil? A believer that you are scum that raised scum? A believer that you created a monster that was praying on children at the parties he thrown? A believer that you also are a loser and a failure in every aspects of life? What really do you believe now that needed a beautiful young girl to be murdered ? Believe on this , you underachieving scum, we hope you and your sick spam burn in hell. And it sounds very sick the way yountalk about Jacklyn. You demented delusional parent. Didn't you see any signs when you had a parasite for a son, living at home at 30 years old? What about when he had a girlfriend half his age? Any signs of the crazy genes? You should had kept your eyes on your sicko spam when he beat up his first girlfriend and monitor his actions, you crying loser. YOU CRY OF SHAME AND GUILT. THAT IS WHAT YOU CAN'T LIVE WITH, THE THOUGHTBTHAT SOMETHING WENT VERY WRONG WHEN YOUNRAISED THAT CRIMINAL. YOU SURE KNOW MORE THAN ANYONE ALL OF IT...
GET THE DVD 'VICTIM NO MORE' LEARN TO DEFEND YOUR OWN LIFE WHEN ATTACKED BY A SERIAL KILLER, KIDNAPPER, OR RAPIST. LEARN HOW TO FUCK THEM UP IN THE WORST WAY IMAGINABLE, THIS DVD IS SWEEPING THE NATIONS!! WOMEN ARE TAKING CHARGE OF THEIR OWN WELL BEING.DVD- $15.OO CHECK CASH OR MONEY ORDERS TO: ADONIS VOWSEN PRODUCTIONSP.O. BOX 547264SURFSIDE, FL. 33154 CHECK OUT THIS POWERFUL COMMERCIAL AS SEEN ON AOL TV!! http://youtu.be/hiyrar1fC-w
so true. i will. tks