Seven months after a Lumberton woman was strangled to death in her house, a friend is accused of committing the murder with his bare hands.

William Gennett (Burlington Co. Dept. of Corrections)
William Gennett (Burlington Co. Dept. of Corrections)

Willam M. Gennett, 53, of Tabernacle, faces murder and stalking charges in connection with the July 5 death of Shannon O'Rourke, 45, according to the office of Burlington County Prosecutor Robert D. Bernardi.

Gennett is under 24-hour guard during hospitalization for what authorities termed a medical episode that occurred en route to the Burlington County Jail, after his February 8 arrest.

Investigators allege that Gennett lived in Mount Holly at the time of O'Rourke's death, and used a cell phone app to track her, without her knowledge.

The Burlington County Medical Examiner listed the cause of death as manual strangulation. Investigators are searching for a motive.

Agencies involved in the investigaiton include Lumberton Police Department and the Burlington County Prosecutor's Crime Scene, High Tech Crimes and Major Crimes units.

Charges are accusations. Defendants are presumed innocent unless, and until, found guilty in a court of law.

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