Highland Park Man Charged With Fatal Stabbing

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HIGHLAND PARK –  Police arrested a Highland Park man Friday, charging him with the murder of  a borough woman who was stabbed in her apartment, Middlesex County Prosecutor Bruce J. Kaplan and Highland Park Police Chief Stephen J. Rizco announced.

Frank Gonzalez, 23, was also charged with burglary following the Fridauy morning death of Brandy Williams, 28, of  Woodbridge Avenue.

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Williams, who was an acquaintance of the defendant, was pronounced dead at 7:42 a.m. on March 12 at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in New Brunswick, authorities said.

The results of an autopsy showed she was the victim of a homicide and died from multiple stab wounds, according to authorities.

Following an intensive investigation, police traced Gonzalez to his home. As police approached his apartment, the defendant fled, jumping out a second-story rear window at about 3:30 p.m, authorities said. He was apprehended nearby, in the backyard of a coin-operated laundry.

Gonzalez is expected to be held at the Middlesex County Adult Correction Center in North Brunswick, authorities said Friday night. Bail has not yet been set. A hearing on the charges will be held today at the Middlesex County Courthouse in New Brunswick.

The investigation began when police were dispatched to Williams’ apartment after receiving a 911 call from a neighbor, who reported a disturbance at 5:42 a.m., authorities said.

Police arrived to find the victim injured in her apartment. She was taken to the hospital, where she died.

The investigation by Lt. Joe Vassallo and Detective Ilan Lancry, both of the Highland Park Police Department, and Investigator Butch Villegas of the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office determined that Williams was not the victim of a random attack, authorities said.

The investigation is on-going, authorities said. Anyone with information is asked to call Lt. Vassallo of Detective Lancry at 1-732-572-3800, or Investigator Villegas at 1-732-745-4428.


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