MILLVILLE — Authorities said they have arrested a city man in connection with the shooting death of a local resident on Nov. 14.

Authorities charge that 28-year-old Neri Sanchez fired a fatal shot at 27-year-old Jerome Chestnut while both were together in a unit at the Oakview apartment complex on East Broad Street.

Sanchez was arrested Wednesday while he was lodged in the Cumberland County jail in Bridgeton after his arrest on a failure-to-appear warrant, said Sgt. Ross Hoffman of the Police Department here.

City police had taken Sanchez into custody in connection with the warrant during the early morning hours Saturday, Hoffman said. An investigation by city police and the Cumberland County Prosecutor’s Office identified Sanchez as the alleged shooter, he said.

Sanchez, who lives at the Oakview apartment complex, is charged with murder and possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose. He will be arraigned at the Cumberland County Courthouse Friday at 1:30 p.m.  Bail is set at $500,000.

Hoffman said no additional charges are pending against Sanchez “in connection with the shooting.”

Sanchez and Chestnut were “hanging out” with “several people” in the apartment complex unit, he said. The investigation is continuing to determine “other possible witnesses and the events of the evening,” he said.

City police said they responded to a 6 p.m. report of a possible gunshot victim and found Chestnut lying unconscious in the Oakview apartment complex unit. Chestnut was eventually pronounced dead at the scene, they said.

Authorities said Chestnut’s last known address was at the Mill Village apartment complex on Wade Boulevard. Mill Village and Oakview are near each other and located across Wade Boulevard from the Millville Senior High School campus.

Services for Chestnut were held Thursday morning at In His Presence Ministries here.

Chesnut’s death marks the 16th slaying in Cumberland County, and the fourth in this city, this year. There were four slaying all of 2013.

Oakview and some of its residents were linked with acts of violence, including two non-fatal shootings, during the past several years.

The city and Oakview’s operator, Community Realty Management, signed an agreement in May that allows local police officers to start patrolling the complex in an attempt to reduce crime there.

The agreement calls for city police to be on duty at Oakview for shifts of varying duration. Community Realty Management pays the officers overtime for the patrols, with the money being funneled to the officers through the city.

The company said it used that program, along with surveillance cameras, at its other properties in Baltimore; Leominster, Mass., and Pine Hill-Lindenwold in Camden County to reduce crime at those facilities.

Contact Thomas Barlas:


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