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Elizabeth Man Indicted for Killing Neighbor

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Scene of Walnut Street on the morning of the murder. Credits: Fran Sullivan
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ELIZABETH, NJ –  An Elizabeth man was charged with first-degree felony murder, first-degree murder, first-degree robbery, and two related weapons offenses in an indictment returned by a  Union County grand jury March 3, acting Union County Prosecutor Grace H. Park announced.

Jimmy Kearney, 18,  was charged  in connection with the fatally shooting of his neighbor 61-year-old Robert Rouse during a robbery last fall.

Elizabeth Police Department patrol units responded to the 400 block of Walnut Street in Elizabeth shortly before 6 a.m. on Monday, October 31, 2016, to find the body of Rouse, who was pronounced dead at the scene, according to Union County Assistant Prosecutor Armando Suarez, who is prosecuting the case.

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Kearney was arrested without incident hours later, Suarez said. He was lodged in Union County Jail on $750,000 bail set by state Superior Court Judge Regina Caulfield.

Felony murder charges are commonly punishable by 30 years to life in state prison.

These criminal charges are mere accusations. Each defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. 

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