Long Branch Armed Robbery Suspect Now Charged with Murder
A Long Branch 18-year-old, already facing armed robbery charges dating back to September 20 in the city, is now accused of mowing a victim down with a gun the next day.
The first-degree murder and second-degree weapons counts lodged against Dante Strong by Monmouth County investigators Thursday are added to armed robbery and weapons charges filed on October 3, according to information from acting County Prosecutor Chris Grammiccioni's office.
Adrian Anderson, 23, died a matter of hours after being found unconscious and bleeding from several gunshot wounds on a Liberty Street porch at about 2:20 AM on September 21, authorities said. He was rushed to Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune and was pronounced dead by 5:22 AM.
During the ensuing probe, Long Branch and county investigators said that they uncovered evidence that tied Strong to an armed robbery on September 20 near Central and Ellis Avenues, less than a block from the spot where Anderson was found.
Strong is being held in the Monmouth County Correctional Institution in Freehold Township in lieu of $850,000 cash-only bail.
At the time of his October 3 arrest in connection with the robbery, his bail had been set at $600,000.
If convicted of the murder charge, Strong would face a sentence of 30 years to life in a New Jersey state prison, and be required to serve at least 85 percent of the time under the state's No Early Release Act if the term handed him exceeds 30 years.
Investigators are still soliciting information about both incidents. Long Branch PD Detective Todd Coleman can be reached at 732-222-1000. Detective Andrea Tozzi of the Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office can be reached at 800-533-7443.