Mary Murphy’s Mysteries

‘Baby Hope’ detective wants to solve his final cold case

THE BRONX (PIX11) - Retired Detective, Jerry Giorgio, was recovering from a kidney transplant and a life-threatening infection, when he learned about a major tip in the “Baby Hope” investigation.

Now that an arrest has been made in the heinous 1991 sex crime and murder of a four year old girl, whose real name was Angelica Castillo, Detective Giorgio has one, last piece of unfinished business.

“Sonia Hidalgo,” he told PIX 11, referring to an unsolved murder case from April 1991–in the same precinct where Baby Hope was found, stuffed into a blue and white cooler.  “Sonia worked at Columbia-Presbyterian Hospital.  She was stabbed at her apartment, probably by someone she knew.  Stabbed 56 times, I believe it was,” Giorgio recalled.

PIX 11 returned to the apartment building at 615 West 164th Street, not far from Columbia-Presbyterian, where Hidalgo lived 22 years ago in a hospital-subsidized apartment.  She was killed inside her fifth-floor walk-up, on April 3, 1991.  Hidalgo had worked in patient relations at Columbia, counseling the families of gunshot and stabbing victims.  Her fiancé found her in a pool of blood, just behind the apartment door.

“When her fiance came home from work, she was there in front of him.  He was working at the time.  We eliminated him as a suspect,”  Giorgio said.

The retired investigator believes he knows who killed Hidalgo, and he said the evidence showed a violent struggle started in the bedroom, went into the living room, and ended in the apartment vestibule.  “There was a lot of anger,” Giorgio told PIX 11.

Now that the Baby Hope case has been solved,  after publicity on the 22nd anniversary of the case prompted a woman to come forward, Detective Giorgio was asked if he’s hopeful about his last, unsolved murder.  “There’s always hope,” Giorgio said.  “I’m the eternal optimist.”

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