WEST ORANGE, NJ -  The Essex County Medical Examiner's Office has ruled that the death of Lelia Whatley, 22, has been ruled a homicide.  The cause of death is Asphyxiation. This information was provided by Katherine Carter of the Essex County Prosecutor's Office this afternoon.

Lelia Whatley, 22was found 'unresponsive' and pronounced dead at the scene of her Washington Street  address (near Watchung Avenue) on Wednesday, October 31, in the morning hours. Acting Essex County Prosecutor Carolyn A. Murray and West Orange Police Chief James Abbott announced today that the West Orange Police Department and the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office Homicide/Major Crimes Unit are investigating.

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Ms. Whatley is formerly of Youngstown, Ohio, and just recently moved to West Orange.