Ocean man indicted for the murder of his still missing housemate
A Monmouth County grand jury has returned a 16-count indictment against Ronald Teschner, the Ocean Township man who murdered his housemate Jacqueline Terrulli, 65, who went missing on September 12, 2019, announced Monmouth County Prosecutor Chris Gramiccioni.
Teschner, 49, had been charged with first degree Murder, first degree Felony Murder, first degree Robbery, second degree Burglary, second degree Arson, third degree Aggravated Assault, second degree Disturbing Human Remains, three counts of third degree Theft, third degree Possession of a Controlled Dangerous Substance, fourth degree Resisting Arrest, third degree Resisting Arrest, two counts of first degree Unlawful Possession of a Weapon and second degree Certain Person’s Not to Possess a Weapon.
Ocean Township police and fire departments responded to the Wickapecko Home around 7:32 am on September 12, 2019 and found the approximately 6,000 square foot residence completely engulfed in flames.
Once the fire was extinguished, a joint investigation was launched by the Ocean Township Police Department and the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office, in conjunction with the Monmouth County Fire Marshal’s Office.
Police determined that two residents, Teschner and Terrulli, along with Terrulli’s 2019 Jeep Cherokee, were missing.
The investigation later revealed that the vehicle was last seen leaving the Monmouth County area around 8: 00 am that morning.
Teschner was located in Paterson alone in Terruli’s vehicle the following morning.
The vehicle contained various items including clothing, shotguns, jewelry and lawn equipment all belonging to Terrulli.
To-date, Jacqueline Terrulli’s remains have not been located.
Gramiccioni said that the investigative team and numerous supporting agencies are doing everything in their power to locate Jacqueline Terrulli’s remains.
If convicted of Murder, Teschner faces the possibility of life in prison without parole.
"We allege that this defendant murdered Jacqueline Terrulli by asphyxiation in the early morning hours of Sept. 12, 2019," Gramiccioni said on December 11, 2019.
Teschner confessed what he did to a friend and said he had heard that Terrulli wanted him out of the house, so he planned to steal items from the house to sell, according to an affidavit.
When Terrulli caught him and threatened to call police, he "dealt with" Terrulli, wrapped her body in a tarp and transported it elsewhere, it said.
The affidavit also said Teschner did not have a permit to possess firearms because of prior convictions for assault and burglary.
Police learned during their investigation that Terrulli for a time had been bothered by Teschner's routine abuse of alcohol and drugs, and repeated pattern of violent behavior.
After Teschner started the house fire, Gramiccioni said, he drove north in her Jeep toward Passaic County. He stopped along the way to sell some stolen items and to purchase heroin.
Teschner remains jailed at the Monmouth County Correctional Institution.
Anyone who has information to share is urged to contact Detective Patrick Petruzziello of the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office at (800) 533-7443 and/or Detective Chris Brady of the Ocean Township Police Department at 732-531-1800.
The case is being prosecuted by Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutors Joseph Cummings and Katherine Butler.
Previous reporting by Dino Flammia was used in this report.
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