Other NJ News

Union Man Convicted on All Charges in 2013 Murder, Dismemberment of Cranford Girlfriend

UNION, NJ – A Union man was found guilty on all charges in the case of the murder and dismemberment of his girlfriend nearly four years ago, acting Union County Prosecutor Thomas K. Isenhour announced Wednesday.

The jury convicted Matthew Ballister III, 47, of first-degree murder, two counts of second-degree desecration of human remains, third-degree hindering apprehension, and several other related charges in connection with the death of 43-year-old April Wyckoff of Cranford.  he verdict was reached after a brief period of jury deliberation Wednesday morning following a six-week trial before state Superior Court Judge Stuart Peim.

Ballister was arrested and charged with murder on Oct. 24, 2013 – two days after Wyckoff had died at his hands, according to Union County assistant prosecutors Scott Peterson and Jillian Reyes, who prosecuted the case.

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Three days after the arrest, following an intensive search involving more than 200 municipal, county and state law-enforcement representatives combing through multiple areas in Essex, Hudson, and Union counties, human remains were recovered on Raymond Avenue near the Pulaski Skyway in Newark and positively identified as belonging to Wyckoff, Peterson and Reyes said. The rest of her body was never found.

Union County Medical Examiner Dr. Junaid Shaikh testified at trial that dozens of sharp- and blunt-force pre-mortem injuries were inflicted on Wyckoff’s head and legs prior to Ballister running her over with his Hummer in the driveway of his home on the 300 block of Mercer Avenue in Union. According to the prosecutor’s office, during the 12 hours that followed, Ballister disposed of Wyckoff’s body, abandoned her car in Newark, purchased approximately $75 in cleaning products at the Home Depot in Watchung and returned home to start cleaning.

“There are no words to fully and accurately describe the depths of depravity associated with this crime,” Isenhour said. “We hope that today’s verdict lends some degree of solace and closure to the friends and family of April Wyckoff.”

Ballister spent the four years leading up to trial lodged in Union County Jail on $5.5 million bail. His mother, 74-year-old Eleanor Schofield of Mountainside, remains charged with fourth-degree hindering apprehension for allegedly interfering with the investigation by attempting to assist in his efforts to conceal evidence of the crime.

Sentencing in the case has been scheduled for Friday, December 15, 2017 before Judge Peim, at which time Ballister will face a term of up to life in state prison without parole.

In its press release, the Prosecutor’s Office thanked the Union Police Department, Union County Sheriff’s Office, Union County Emergency Response Team, Cranford Police Department, Mountainside Police Department, United States Park Police, New Jersey National Guard, New Jersey State Police, New Jersey State Park Police, Bergen County Sheriff’s Office, Essex County Prosecutor’s Office, Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office, Jersey City Police Department, Newark Police Department, Perth Amboy Police Department, and members of the 109th graduating class of the John H. Stamler Police Academy for assisting in the investigation and search for Ms. Wyckoff’s body.

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Grocery Shopping With A Twist

Grocery shopping takes on a new meaning at Sadie’s! 

This week we are introducing the brand Groceries Apparel. Their focus is to create fashion pieces with a purpose by using organic and recycled materials and made right here in the USA. With a focus on seed to skin these new items are sexy meets “green” with super soft shirts made from eucalyptus and versatile ...

Election Day Is Over. Now What?

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Sustained, Severe Cuts Equal Setbacks at NJ Department of Environmental Protection

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Mazzocchi will Put Students First: Candidate Statement from Felisha George and Avery Julien

November 4, 2017

We Support Anthony Mazzocchi for Board of Education

Mazzocchi will Put Students First

Statement by Candidates Felisha George and Avery Julien

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South Orange Police Blotter - Three Burglaries to Autos Reported

November 11, 2017

South Orange Police Blotter as of November 11

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Upcoming Events

Sat, November 18

Maplewood Memorial Library, Maplewood

Fall Book Sale - Friends of Maplewood Library

Community Calendar Giving Back

Sat, November 18, 8:00 AM

South Mountain Reservation , South Orange

Two Towns Turkey Trot 5K and Kids' Fun Fun

Education Health & Wellness Sports

Sat, November 18, 2:00 PM

South Orange Performing Arts Center, South Orange

Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs at SOPAC

Arts & Entertainment

Sat, November 18, 6:00 PM

Prospect Presbyterian Church, Maplewood

Maplewood Rotary Spaghetti Dinner

Food & Drink Giving Back

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Downtown Millburn Offers Free Parking for Holiday Season

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Weekly Specials at Ashley Marketplace & Cafe - November 17 to November 23

Shop Ashley Marketplace & Cafe for your everyday needs!

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