In New Jersey, the accused serial killer who has already been charged with the murders of three women in a six-month killing spree is now the center suspect for the attack of a fourth woman.
About the New Jersey Serial Killer
Khalil Wheeler-Weaver, age 20, has been linked to three strangulation deaths of college women ranging from 19 to 33 years in age. The victims, Sarah Butler, Joanne Brown, and Robin West, were found with signs of strangulation, while West was also discovered badly burned.
Wheeler-Weaver was a security guard at ShopRite, and he is now being accused of trying to kill another 34-year-old woman, however, the details have not been fully disclosed.
There was no criminal history on record for Wheeler-Weaver, which is why it was hard to find him first. Essex County prosecutors announced back in December 2016 that he was the man behind the New Jersey slayings that plagued the county.
The police have searched for a pattern that went along with the disturbing group of gruesome murders.
The fourth victim, however, did not die. Instead, she is accusing Wheeler-Weaver of attempting to strangle her, but her details have been kept private for her security.
One common thread found by investigators was that all the women were young African-Americans, and two of them were strangled to death. The man was an acquaintance of two of the women and had contact with the third. However, his connections were not always so clear.
A Serial Killer Born from a Family of Police Officers?
What is surprising is the background of Wheeler-Weaver. His family has two law enforcement officers, and he even lived with one of the officers. Wheeler-Weaver has never been arrested, and he has no criminal past of any kind.
During his arraignment, he pled not-guilty to the charges. At the time of his initial charges, police were already eyeing him as a potential serial killer. He is now being held on $5 million bail, and he is charged with 11 different counts, including murder, kidnapping, sexual assault, desecration of a human body, attempted murder, and aggravated arson.
He will be prosecuted for the other murders on March 13, including the fourth victim that he has allegedly tried to strangle.
During his court appearances, thus far, he has shown no emotion. His hands are cuffed behind him, and he does not make any expressions when the judge issues a higher bail during the arraignment. As of now, he is presumed innocent, and his attorney Shevelle McPherson kindly reminds the media of this fact every time she is interviewed.
Per the authorities, two of the victims were reported missing before they were later discovered. McPherson has argued that there is no direct evidence that the two crimes are even connected and that prosecutors will need to show evidence if they want a conviction in the case — let alone to deem the man a serial killer.
Authorities have said that Wheeler-Weaver was acquainted with the victims, but they could not specify the full connection.