SPECIAL REPORT: The combination of pressures over stolen money, illegal drug use and an ongoing police investigation into an AR-15 military-style rifle stolen from a Mahwah home led a Suffern couple to kill the woman’s 70-year-old uncleand then jump off the George Washington Bridge to their deaths, authorities said today.
The investigation is far from complete, Suffern Police Chief Clarke Osborn said during a morning new conference. However, he said complicated troubles inside a seemingly peaceful home just a few blocks from Suffern Village Hall led to the death of longtime resident William Valenti.
Valenti’s niece, 40-year-old Nicki Hunt Circelli, and her boyfriend Gary Crockett, 41, tried to deceive relatives about Valenti’s death to give them time to get away after asphyxiating the longtime food truck operator, who served Mahwah area businesses, the chief said.
In fact, it was Valenti’s business that led to the discovery of his body.
When he didn’t show up for work Monday, his partner went to the house with Valenti’s nephew and found a note from Circelli and Hunt saying they’d taken him to the hospital.
“This was an intentional deception effort,” Osborn said.
Crockett already was a person of interest in the Mahwah investigation of a AR-15 military-style rifle stolen March 1 from a home where a moving company he worked for had been. READ MORE ….
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Award-winning newsman Bill Demarest, Editor of Nyack Free Press, has been a reporter and editor covering New York and New Jersey for more than 30 years.
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