Andreas Erazo, accused of killing 11-year-old Abbiegail Smith, was denied bail today.
Erazo, 18, of Keansburg, was charged with first degree Murder, third degree Possession of a Weapon for an Unlawful Purpose and fourth degree Unlawful Possession of a Weapon in connection with the death of 11-year-old Abbiegail “Abbie” Smith, who was found on the roof of a shed outside his window.
Keansburg police responded to 16 Hancock St. at about 9:24 p.m., Wednesday, July 12, 2017, after receiving a report that the resident's 11-year-old daughter was missing. Keansburg police immediately launched a missing person's investigation.
Keansburg Police notified the Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office of the situation in the early morning hours of Thursday, July 13, when a joint investigation was launched into the disappearance of Abbiegail Smith.
At approximately 10:20 a.m., detectives from the Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office's Forensic and Technical Services Bureau were behind the apartment complex, which includes the victim's residence. While in the rear yard, detectives ultimately observed an object wrapped up in what appeared to be a blanket or comforter up on a rear roof. Upon closer inspection, they found what appeared to be a deceased human body.
The Middlesex County Medical Examiner's Office responded to the scene. The victim was pronounced deceased at 1:10 p.m. by Dr. Lauren Thoma.
As the investigation continued into the murder, police identified and ultimately charged Erazo, the young girl's upstairs neighbor, with murder and the weapons charges detailed above.
During court today, investigators noted that during the initial search, detectives went to Erazo's apartment to inquire if he had seen the missing girl, his reply was that he had not seen her and even consented to a search of the apartment.
Assistant Monmouth County Prosecutor Diane Aifer today released details of how Abbiegail's body was found. Her body was wrapped with what authorities described futon comforter and a sheet. She was barely clothed and bound with a cord from a computer. She had injuries on both sides of her neck.
Despite Erazo's attorney attempts convince Superior Court Judge Richard English to release him, judge ordered that he remain detained during these proceedings and through the trial after considering all the factors in the case, including a public safety assessment completed that recommended that Erazo not be released.