MAYS LANDING, N.J. (CBS) – It has been a cold case for 34 years – a well known cab driver and emcee from Atlantic City, stabbed and left for dead. But police have not given up on finding his killer.
The case of who killed Raul “Cooks Books” Suarez has been cold since 1985. But on the anniversary of the murder, Atlantic County officials said they continue to hope new information will help get justice.
After 34 years, Blanche Morro, Suarez’s niece, says it’s still emotional to discuss her uncle’s death, but she does have new hope for leads.
Morro and her brother, Mario, shared a special bond with their uncle when they were children. Morro said that they were Suarez’s “little sidekicks.”
“He was a singer and a cab driver and a lot of people knew him,” Morro said.
Suarez made a name for himself in the 1960s and ‘70s as a cab driver, TV and radio host and an emcee at once famous Atlantic City night clubs like Grabels Restaurant Lounge & Catering and the 500 Club. As an emcee, Suarez introduced performers like Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis, his family said.
“He did rub elbows and more or less, introduce them or worked with them while he was,” Morro said, “and because they got to know him, at his funeral there were flowers from a lot of them.”
On March 31, 1985, Suarez was found stabbed to death in front of the Crest Motel on the White Horse Pike in Absecon, New Jersey. His cab was later found in Atlantic City.
The homicide remains a mystery.
“We’re beside ourselves because he was a very big figure in our life,” Morro said.
The Atlantic City Prosecutor’s Office said over the last 34 years, they’ve interviewed 160 people trying to find Suarez’s killer. They say this remains an active investigation and refuse to call it a cold case.
“I was told that there was blood work and that it wasn’t my uncle’s blood,” Morro said.
Just recently, the family learned there may be DNA evidence to examine from Suarez’s cab.
They’re awaiting tests, hoping for a miracle, which would be fitting since Suarez’s motto was “every day is a miracle.”
“He believed that every day that you’re above ground and every day that you are able to breathe and give and do, it’s a miracle,” Morro said.