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Monmouth County couple indicted in the murder of a Brick Township man

A Monmouth County couple is the recipient of a 13-count indictment Monday after being charged in connection with the murder of a Brick Township man they allegedly shot and left to die on the side of the road in Shark River Park in February.

Courtroom detail
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Joseph Villani, 21, of Parkview Avenue in Ocean Township alongside his girlfriend Raquel Garajau, 20, of Frontier Way in Tinton Falls face a hefty list of charges that could lead to life in prison for the murder of 29-year old Trupal Patel.

Investigators determined that Villani and Garajau allegedly conspired together and killed Patel inside Villani’s home in February and left his body on the side of the road in Shark River Park where a Park Ranger made the gruesome discovery just after 8:30 am on the morning of February 22.

Patel had already been reported missing for nearly two weeks in a report filed by police in Asbury Park after the Brick Township man’s 2003 Jaguar was vacant on the side of a street.

Missing NJ man was killed and his body dumped in Jersey Shore park

The Monmouth County Prosecutors Office is charging both suspects in this heinous murder with: “first degree Murder, first degree Robbery, first degree Felony Murder, second degree Possession of a Weapon for an Unlawful Purpose, second degree Unlawful Possession of an Assault Rifle, second degree Disturbing or Desecrating Human Remains, three counts of fourth degree Tampering with Evidence, third degree Hindering Apprehension of Oneself, third degree Hindering Apprehension of Another, and third degree Tampering with a Witness.”

If convicted of the murder or felony murder charge, Villani may spend life in prison without parole while Garajau faces life in prison or a minimum 30-years in State Prison.

The first degree robbery charge carries up to 20-years maximum in prison, while the second degree weapons counts carry up to 10-years in jail.

After murdering Patel, their tampering with his body could carry even more years in prison as they may face another 10-years if convicted of that charge.

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