A man facing charges in connection with a murder and burglary that occurred at an Essex Fells residence in 2010, recently pleaded guilty to aggravated manslaughter and conspiracy to commit burglary charges in Essex County Superior Court.
28-year old Newark resident Shaun Woodson was accused of participating in the burglary and murder of 91-year-old Robert Nevius, a retired executive and veteran of World War II, who was killed in his home in Essex Fells, New Jersey in April of 2010.
According to prosecutors, Nevius was strangled, brutally beaten with a stapler, and stabbed in the neck after electrical cord and packing tape were used to restrain his hands and feet. During the course of the crime, which marked the first homicide in Essex Fells in over 30 years, the perpetrators stole thousands of dollars worth of jewelry.
Authorities also charged 32-year-old East Orange resident Reginald Anthony, who was believed to have conspired with Woodson to commit the crime, with murder, robbery, andconspiracy to commit burglary. In 2012, Anthony was found guilty of the burglary charges and sentenced to a 20-year term of incarceration in New Jersey State Prison. He was acquitted on the charges for murder and robbery, as the jury found that prosecutors did not provide sufficient evidence to prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt.
Although Anthony was only convicted of a second degree crime, which is punishable by a term of incarceration ranging from 5 to 10 years in New Jersey State Prison, he was sentenced to serve 20 years due to his extensive criminal history. Under N.J.S.A. 2C:44-1, a New Jersey Superior Court judge has the discretion to consider the extent of the defendant’s prior criminal record and the seriousness of the offenses for which that individual has been convicted, as aggravating factors before determining appropriate sentencing.
In Woodson’s case, his recent guilty plea will subject him to a term of incarceration ranging from 5 to 10 years in New Jersey State Prison. Essex County Superior Court Judge Peter Vazquez has scheduled his sentencing for March 4, 2014.
For more information pertaining to this case, access the following article: Second man pleads guilty to role in slaying of Essex Fells World War II vet