News Segment


February 26, 2005

OLD BRIDGE — He told the 14-year-old Sayreville girl he was “T-Rex” and he liked to impersonate the guitarist for the heavy metal band they both liked, Static-X, authorities said.

But the 39-year-old man accused of meeting the girl through the Internet, driving from Pennsylvania and sexually assaulting her in an Old Bridge shopping center in January was no impersonator, police said.

Tod Rex Salvador, who goes by the stage name Tripp Eisen, a guitarist for Static-X, was apprehended Thursday in Orange County, Calif. by two detectives from New Jersey, authorities said.

Salvador, of Burbank, Calif., was charged with kidnapping, aggravated sexual assault, luring to entice a minor through the Internet and endangering the welfare of a child. If convicted, he faces a maximum of 30 years in prison on the kidnapping charge alone.

When Det. Scott Crocco of the Old Bridge Police Department and Det. Sgt. David Jones of the state police encountered Salvador, he had just gotten out of jail.

Police in California arrested Salvador on Feb. 10 after finding him sleeping in a parked car with a girl with whom he had just had sexual intercourse, said Jon Fleischman of the Orange County Sheriff’s Department.

Salvador was charged with committing a lewd act with a child and was released after posting $100,000 bail, Fleischman said.

Following his arrest Thursday technically on a fugitive warrant from New Jersey, Salvador was turned over to the Central Men’s Jail in Santa Ana, Calif. He is being held there without bail while he awaits extradition to New Jersey, authorities said.

“We’ve confiscated several computers to examine them to see if there are other victims,” Lt. Kevin Rehmann of the New Jersey State Police said. “We suspect there may be in several other states.”

Static-X is one of the most popular groups to emerge from what’s known as the nu-metal scene of the late 1990s that spawned bands like Korn.

The band released its debut album, “Wisconsin Death Trip,” in 1998. The album went gold, selling half a million copies. A new album is scheduled for release later this year.

A call placed to the band’s publicist at Warner Bros. was not returned. A management company, The Firm, referred calls to Salvador’s Los Angeles-based attorney, Mark Werksmen, who did not return calls.

Police said the Sayreville girl met Salvador on a Web Site where he used the screen name “groverygodadat” under the heading “never married male looking for female.”

“He tells the girl he’s a fan of the band and portrays himself to look like the guitarist in (Static-X),” Rehmann said.

He drove out to Old Bridge on Jan. 7 from Pen Argyl, Pa., in a truck belonging to a Pennsylvania relative, said Lt. Robert Weiss of the Old Bridge Police Department. Salvador, who once lived in New Jersey, was back in Pennsylvania from the West Coast on an extended holiday visit.

Police said he had consensual sex with the Sayreville girl in the truck in the parking lot of the shopping center. The girl’s mother found out about the assault and went to Old Bridge detective Thomas Montagna, Weiss said.

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