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Two Virginia Residents Charged for Attempted Home Invasion, Robbery in Marlboro Township

By metrostaff on
Malboro Township

A pair of Virginia residents have been arrested and charged with conspiring to orchestrate an armed home invasion, and robbery in Marlboro Township earlier this fall, Monmouth County officials announced Thursday.

According to Monmouth County officials, Acori Knox, 21, of Hampton, Virginia, and Lauren McNeil, 24, of Newport News, are each charged with second-degree Conspiracy to Commit Burglary, second-degree Conspiracy to Commit Robbery, and second-degree Attempted Burglary.

Officials say, Knox is additionally charged with first-degree Attempted Robbery, second-degree Eluding Police, and three second-degree weapons offenses.

According to Marlboro Township Police Department, shortly after 5:30 a.m. on Saturday, September 24, members of the police department responded to a residential neighborhood on a report of an attempted home invasion.

Police say, at that location, they learned that an adult male suspect, later identified as Knox, had just left the scene in a dark-colored Cadillac sedan with Virginia license plates, having minutes earlier attempted to enter the home through a rear patio door while brandishing an AK-47-style rifle.

A Patrolman quickly located the vehicle and initiated a pursuit but soon thereafter broke it off due to excessive speed and the associated risk to public safety.

McNeil was one of several individuals present as guests at home at the time.

According to police, it was revealed that she and her boyfriend, Knox, had planned the home invasion via text messages ahead of time, seeking to restrain the homeowner while robbing him of cash and personal effects.

Both defendants were taken into custody without incident yesterday in Newport News, Virginia, and they now await extradition proceedings and a first appearance and detention hearing to take place in Monmouth County Superior Court.

“This case has been marked by consistently stellar investigative work throughout, from a swift initial response that very well may have prevented a far worse outcome all the way through the identification of these suspects and their arrests yesterday,” Acting Prosecutor Santiago said.

“It’s also a prime example of how powerfully effective collaborative efforts involving multiple agencies can be, all in an overarching effort to ensure that public safety is maintained throughout our communities.”

These criminal charges are commonly punishable by terms of up to 20 years in state prison, while second-degree convictions can result in terms of up to 10 years.