New Brunswick Man Pleads Guilty To 2008 Fatal Shooting

NEW BRUNSWICK—A New Brunswick man has pleaded guilty to a count of aggravated manslaughter, admitting he fatally shot another man on a city street in 2008, Middlesex County Prosecutor Bruce J. Kaplan announced today.

Derrick Higgins, 23, pleaded guilty to the charge on April 1, admitting he shot and killed William Wilson Jr., 27, of Franklin Township.


Higgins pleaded guilty to the charge during a hearing at the Middlesex County Courthouse in New Brunswick before Superior Court Judge Frederick DeVesa.

Under the terms of a plea agreement negotiated with Middlesex County Assistant Prosecutor Michael Weiss, the defendant faces 20 years in prison when he is sentenced by DeVesa on June 28. As part of the plea agreement, Higgins must serve 85 percent of his prison term before he can be eligible for parole.

Higgins was arrested and charged following an investigation by Detective Mark Pappas of the New Brunswick Police Department and Investigator Paul Miller of the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office.

The investigation began after police received a 911 call at 1:19 a.m. on June 20, 2008, reporting a shooting. Police arrived to find the victim dead in bushes near a house at 135 Jones Avenue in New Brunswick. An autopsy showed the victim died from a single gunshot wound to the chest.

Higgins was arrested and charged later in the day, He remains in custody at the Middlesex County Adult Correction Center in North Brunswick.

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