New evidence turns up as search for Sarah Stern’s body continues
NEPTUNE CITY -- Investigators had no success finding the remains of 19-year-old Sarah Stern during their weekend search around the Shark River Inlet and along the shore.
The search that included State Police marine and aviation units stretched between Asbury Park and the Manasquan Inlet, probing for any signs of Stern's body.
"It is possible, due to oceanic currents and tides, that her remains might have been swept out of the river into the Atlantic," Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher Gramiccioni said. "But we are hoping for a miracle."
Liam McAtasney and Preston Taylor, both friends of Stern’s from Neptune City, were charged in connection with her murder last Thursday. Taylor has a detention hearing scheduled for Tuesday.
According to the criminal complaint signed Wednesday, McAtasney is accused of strangling Stern during a robbery Dec. 2 at Stern’s Neptune City home. McAtasney and Taylor are both accused of moving her body from her home and throwing her over the Route 35 bridge over the Shark River Inlet.
The complaint said the robbery involved stealing money from the house.
News 12 New Jersey reported that police found two safe deposit boxes hidden in two different locations that contained the items stolen from the Stern home. One of the boxes was found in Sandy Hook and the other was found at Shark River Park in Wall Township, according to the report, which offered no details on what led police to those locations.
"Without physically finding Sarah, it's still difficult for me to process all this. It's a hard thing to go through. None of this makes sense," Sarah Stern's father, Michael told NJ.com.
Funeral arrangements have not yet been announced.
A GoFundMe page was created by Karen Juliano Watt of Asbury Park to help with those expenses."Sarah's grandmother and my grandmother were sisters. I cant imagine losing a child, like so many people, my heart just feels such devastation for Michael and family," Watt told New Jersey 101.5 in an email. "I think many people have been touched by this sadness and just want to do something. That is why I created the gofundme page in honor of Sarah."
Contact reporter Dan Alexander at Dan.Alexander@townsquaremedia.com.
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