CHICOPEE, MA (WGGB/WSHM) -- What’s typically a time to celebrate and gather with family turned tragic last year for one local family after 28-year-old Francisco Roman went missing leaving his family with many questions.
Two men were arrested in connection with his death and charged with kidnapping resulting in death and causing the death of a person through the use of a firearm.
His mom spoke exclusively for the first time to Western Mass News with reaction to the horrific way he died.
“Well that was my only son, my only child, so it was difficult. He didn’t deserve that,” Roman’s mother Mayra Arroyo said.
Arroyo continues mourning the loss of her only child.
On December 24, 2020, the whole family was together to celebrate Christmas.
Roman left his mom’s house that evening to head to his father’s side of the family, but that’s the last time he was seen.
“I went on with my day, of course, but in the night time I will usually text him one o’clock in the morning I'll text him and send him pictures of his son, kids,” Arroyo explained.
Arroyo said the response she got was not like her son, which gave her a bad gut feeling.
“I had just gotten an okay; he usually is the type to tell me mom go to sleep, look at the time so, he didn't respond, he just ignored what he usually says,” Arroyo said.
The next morning, Christmas Day, Arroyo texted her son wishing him a Merry Christmas and said I love you so much, but there was still no response.
“I started calling his brother, his father. I called his aunt and no one had seen him; he never showed up to the family's house, his grandmother's house, to see his father and his aunts,” Arroyo said.
His mom said it wasn’t like him to ignore his family on Christmas, especially his three kids.
Arroyo said he planned to hand out Christmas gift cards to the rest of the family. He had a broken right leg making holiday shopping difficult.
“When he wasn’t around, it wasn’t like him to just disappear and just forget about everyone, that's how we knew something was wrong,” Arroyo explained.
The family filed a missing persons report with the Chicopee Police Department but something was telling Arroyo her son was in Hartford, Connecticut.
CHICOPEE, MA (WGGB/WSHM) -- A Chicopee man who was reported missing on Christmas Eve has bee…
“Mother's intuition had to be because that's where I was really focusing on. I don't know why something was just telling me to call there,” Arroyo added.
Shortly before 9 p.m. on December 26, the Hartford Police and Fire Departments responded to a residential neighborhood in Hartford where a black 2010 Acura was engulfed in flames.
That car matched the same kind of car Roman drove.
After the fire was put out investigators discovered a male body in the back of the car.
Arroyo said detectives contacted her, suspecting it was Roman and they needed help identifying the tattoos on his body.
“I knew it. I felt it in my heart. You know it was a devastating thing, I didn't want to hear anything else, I kind of blanked out,” Arroyo recalled.
On December 28, police officially identified Roman as the victim. He had suffered several gunshot wounds, which the Connecticut medical examiner determined as his cause of death.
“My son didn't deserve to die that way,” Arroyo said.
On February 11, Brandon Batiste, of Springfield, Massachusetts, and Calvin Roberson, of Waterbury, Connecticut, were charged for their alleged involvement in the kidnapping and murder of Roman.
(WGGB/WSHM) -- Two people are under arrest in connection with the 2020 kidnapping and murder…
Batiste was arrested in Georgia and Roberson in Waterbury.
Authorities said if convicted, the defendants face life in prison, or the federal government could seek the death penalty.
This is something the family is calling on.
“The maximum penalty they can face,” Arroyo said.
The family also suspects more people could have been involved.
“I do believe in my heart that my son did put up a fight and that it’s a possibility that there were more people involved because my son was a big person,” Arroyo said.
Arroyo said her son was everything she lived for.
“He was a great person, he loved life, he had fun, he loved people, everywhere we went people loved him, people were happy to see him,” Arroyo said.
Two of his kids are now seeking therapy to help cope with the loss of their father.
“I love him so much,” Roman's son said.
The family hopes justice is served.
“He would pray at night with me that's the type of person they took away from me,” Arroyo said.