NEWARK, NJ – Today, an Essex County Grand Jury returned a nine-count indictment charging Ali Muhammad Brown, 30, of Seattle, Washington, with two counts of terrorism, one count of murder and other charges for killing Brendan Tevlin, 19, of Livingston on June 25, 2014, according to Acting Essex County Prosecutor Carolyn A. Murray.
In addition to terrorism and murder, Brown was also charged with felony murder, carjacking, robbery and multiple weapons offenses including possession of hollow point bullets, according to Assistant Prosecutor Jamel Semper, who is handling the case. Brown is expected to be arraigned on Aug. 4, before Presiding Judge of the Criminal Division Honorable Ronald D. Wigler.
This is the first murder case in New Jersey in which a defendant has been charged with terrorism under state law, according to Murray. She sought and obtained the permission of Acting Attorney General John J. Hoffman to present the charge to the grand jury against Brown, a self-described Muslim.
“As the investigation continued, evidence was developed including evidence subsequent to arrest, which led to the decision to seek terrorism charges against Brown,” said Murray.
The indictment alleges, Tevlin, who was home after completing his freshman year at the University of Richmond, was shot multiple times, while stopped at a traffic light at Walker Road and Northfield Avenue in West Orange by Brown, according to Semper.
Shortly before the murder, Tevlin contacted a family member and indicated he was on his way home from visiting friends.
Charges Dismissed Against Brown’s Two Co-Defendants
Today, the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office also dismissed the charges against two co-defendants, Eric Williams, 19, and Jeremy Villagran, 20, both West Orange, who were arrested and charged in August of 2014 with Brown.
“Based on the evidence and the information we have at this time, we believe this is the appropriate course of action,” said Murray.
She added, “As we have stated in the past, the investigation in this case is active and ongoing. It remains so. Consequently, we are unable to make any further statements regarding the case at this time.”
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