Jeremiah E. Monell, 33, of Commercial Township, was found guilty of the December 18, 2016, murder of Tara O’Shea, also of Commercial Township. A Cumberland County jury returned the verdict Friday morning, January 18th, finding Monell guilty of first degree Murder and related weapons offenses following a two week trial before the Honorable Cristen P. D’Arrigo, J.S.C. The murder occurred at the victim’s residence at 7901 Raymond Drive located in the community of Laurel Lake. During the trial, the medical examiner testified that Ms. O’Shea suffered nearly 90 sharp force injury wounds. The knives used to commit the murder were found by investigators behind the kitchen stove, one of which contained the defendant’s palm print. The son of the victim and defendant, J.W.M., who was twelve when the crime occurred, witnessed the incident. The investigation was conducted by members of the New Jersey State Police Homicide South Unit, Crime Scene Investigation Unit, and Criminal Investigation Unit.
In addition to the guilty verdict for Murder, the jury found an aggravating factor that the crime was committed by the defendant’s own conduct and under circumstances were outrageously or wantonly vile, horrible or inhuman and involved torture, depravity of mind, or an aggravated assault to the victim. As a result of the verdict, the defendant is facing a mandatory sentence of life without parole.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant County Prosecutor Charles J. Wettstein. The defendant was represented by Nathan Perry and Joellyn Jones, whose offices are in Bridgeton. Sentencing is scheduled for March 1, 2019.
*If this press release involves the charging, accusation or indictment of a criminal defendant, same is merely an accusation. The defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.