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Man Arraigned for Murder of Ex-Girlfriend

By Nigel Chiwaya | January 8, 2013 12:02pm | Updated on January 8, 2013 12:11pm

MANHATTAN CRIMINAL COURT — A man accused of traveling to Inwood and fatally stabbing his ex-girlfriend on New Year's Eve has been arraigned.

Jonathan Pena-Castillo, 21, was arrested by cops on Jan. 2 and charged with second-degree murder in the stabbing death of Edith Rojas.

Cops say Pena-Castillo, who lives in Patterson, New Jersey, stabbed Rojas, 19, in the back outside of her Thayer Street apartment before fleeing to Fort Tryon Park and stabbing himself.

His court appearance was delayed as he recovered from the stab wounds at St. Luke's Hospital. His arraignment happened Monday.

At Rojas' wake on Friday, family members called Pena-Castillo controlling.

"She felt overly pressured by him," Rojas' brother, Ronny Peralta, said.

"He was always calling, like, 'What are you doing? Let me see who you're with. You can't travel. I'm always going to call you.'"

Pena-Castillo is due back in court on Jan. 30.