NEW BRUNSWICK — An Edison man has pleaded guilty to charges of murder and endangering the welfare of a child, admitting he strangled a North Brunswick woman in her apartment and then abandoned their 20-month-old daughter at a gas station in Delaware.
Dwayne Jackson, 26, admitted the charges on April 14, during a hearing before Superior Court Judge Bradley Ferencz at the Middlesex County Courthouse in New Brunswick, Middlesex County Prosecutor Bruce J. Kaplan announced today.
Under the terms of a plea agreement reached with Middlesex County Assistant Prosecutor Sheree Pitchford, the defendant will be sentenced to 30 years in a New Jersey State Prison, with no chance for parole for 30 years. Ferencz set the sentencing for May 19.
As part of the plea agreement, Jackson will be sentenced to 30 years for murder, and eight years for endangering the welfare of the 20-month-old child. The endangerment penalty will be served concurrently to the murder count.
While pleading guilty, Jackson told the court that on Feb. 21, 2010, he had argued with Patricia Belizaire, 25, choked her and continued to choke her after she fell to the floor.
He said the couple’s daughter, Hanna Belizaire Jackson, was at home during the attack. He also said he abandoned the 20-month-old child at a gas station restroom in Newark, Del.
An investigation by the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office and the North Brunswick Police Department determined that Jackson killed Belizaire in her North Brunswick apartment and drove the victim to Ramapo, N.Y., where her body was set on fire in a park shortly before 5:22 a.m. on Feb. 22, 2010.
In Delaware, Jackson was charged with first degree reckless endangering for leaving the child at a Shell service station on South College Avenue on Feb. 21, 2010.
The child was identified after her photograph was published by the news media. She remains in the custody of relatives.
A co-defendant, Ritu Loi, 27 of New Brunswick, is awaiting sentencing after she pleaded guilty on Nov. 3, 2010, to counts of child endangerment and hindering Jackson’s apprehension.
Loi said she helped Jackson abandon his daughter and then tried to protect him from police.
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