Skip to main content

NJ Woman Sentenced to 45 Years in Prison for Killing Her Wife

Brick Township

By: Richard L. Smith 

Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley D. Billhimer reported that on January 12, 2023, Mayra Gavilanez-Alectus, 49, of Brick Township, was sentenced to forty-five years in New Jersey State Prison by the Honorable Rochelle Gizinski, J.S.C., in connection with the murder of her wife, Rebecca Gavilanez-Alectus, which occurred sometime between May 16thand 17th, 2020, in Brick Township.  

This sentence will be subject to the terms of the No Early Release Act, meaning that Gavilanez-Alectus will be required to serve at least 85 percent of her prison sentence before she may be considered for parole eligibility.

Ocean County officials said Mayra Gavilanez-Alectus was found guilty of Murder on September 29, 2022, following a nearly three-week jury trial before Judge Gizinski. 

The jury also found Gavilanez-Alectus guilty of Possession of a Weapon for an Unlawful Purpose and Unlawful Possession of a Weapon.

According to Ocean County officials, on May 17, 2020, Brick Township Police were summoned to a residence on Creek Road for a report of an unresponsive female.  

Upon arrival, Officers found the lifeless body of Rebecca Gavilanez-Alectus in an upstairs bedroom of the residence. On May 18, 2020, the Ocean County Medical Examiner performed a post-mortem examination of Ms. Gavilanez-Alectus’ body and determined the manner of her death to be a homicide.

 A subsequent investigation by the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crime Unit, Brick Township Police Department Detective Bureau, and Ocean County Sheriff’s Office Crime Scene Investigation Unit revealed that both the victim and the defendant resided at the Creek Road address.  

Officials say the investigation further revealed that a cylindrical container used for the purpose of chilling wine was utilized in the commission of the murder.  

The injuries sustained by Rebecca Gavilanez-Alectus were consistent with the implementation of this item. 

Further investigation ultimately determined that Mayra Gavilanez-Alectus did, in fact, cause the victim’s death by utilizing the wine chiller.  On May 18, 2020, a warrant for the arrest of Mayra Gavilanez-Alectus was issued.  

On May 21, 2020, Mayra Gavilanez-Alectus was taken into custody by law enforcement in Houston, Texas.

 She was extradited back to New Jersey and lodged in the Ocean County Jail since her extradition.

“We hope this lengthy prison sentence affords Rebecca’s family some level of peace and closure,” Prosecutor Billhimer stated.

“I’d like to extend my sincere gratitude to Senior Assistant Prosecutor Meghan O’Neill and Assistant Prosecutor Kaitlyn Burke - who together tried this case on behalf of the State - for their skill and dedication in prosecuting this horrendous murder,” Prosecutor Billhimer concluded.