Christopher D. Erazo, 18, of Suydam Drive in Jersey City, surrendered to homicide detectives Wednesday night and he appeared in Central Judicial Processing Court in Jersey City yesterday via video link from Hudson County jail in Kearny.
A warrant for Erazo’s arrest was issued Tuesday, charging him with the March 29 murder of Chad Edgehill, 24, who moved to Fairmount Avenue in Jersey City from Brooklyn a year ago, Hudson County Prosecutor Edward DeFazio said.
Erazo’s bail had already been set at $500,000 cash only when he appeared in CJP yesterday. He told the judge yesterday he understood his rights and had no questions, ending the brief hearing.
The prosecutor said that after Erazo’s picture appeared on the front page of The Jersey Journal, an attorney contacted the Prosecutor’s Office and said Erazo would surrender. He turned himself in Wednesday night, DeFazio said.
Edgehill, who was a security guard at New York’s Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, was shot in the back of his head and the bullet exited his forehead, officials said.
The motive for the killing is not clear, but the suspect and the victim apparently knew each other, DeFazio said, adding police are searching for a second man who was with Erazo.
Security footage shows the victim met the gunman and accomplice near the Jackie Robinson statue in front of the PATH station, officials said. The gunman and victim were then captured on security video in the Duane Reade on the PATH concourse, where Edgehill withdrew money from an ATM, DeFazio said.
The three men then walked toward Hudson County Community College and under the covered walkway running along the building’s west side, where Edgehill was shot at 9:20 p.m., officials said.
An off-duty Port Authority police officer heard the shot and found Edgehill dead with $120 near his hand, officials said.
Anyone with information on the incident is asked to call the Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office’s Homicide Squad at (201) 915-1345.
Chad Edgehill, 24, of Jersey City, was shot once in the back of the head near the entrance of the college building on Sip Avenue at about 9:20 p.m., Hudson County Prosecutor Edward DeFazio said. The bullet exited his forehead.
“It was a brutal, wanton act of violence,” DeFazio said of the death of Edgehill, who recently moved to Jersey City from Brooklyn and was employed as a security guard at Lincoln Center in New York.
After hearing the gunshot, an off-duty Port Authority police officer found the body and chased the gunman and an accomplice down Sip Avenue and onto Enos Place, where he lost sight of them.
Police have released an image of the alleged gunman inside a store in the Journal Square Transportation Center concourse. The image shows him wearing a red sweater over a red shirt that appears to have an image of a cobra on it with lettering above, DeFazio said, adding that shirt has long black sleeves. He is described as being about 6 feet tall with a thin build, DeFazio said.
The alleged gunman was with a second man described as being about 5-foot-10, thin, and wearing a black hooded sweatshirt, jeans and a baseball cap with a blue brim, DeFazio said. Investigators think the gunman may have handed his sweater and the gun to his accomplice as they ran, DeFazio said.
Just before the shooting, the victim met the gunman and accomplice near the Jackie Robinson statue in front of the PATH station and security video “indicates there was some familiarity and no apparent tension between the men.” The shooter and Edgehill entered a drug store on the PATH concourse and the victim withdrew money from an ATM, DeFazio said.
The three men then left the store and walked toward the college and under the covered walkway that runs along the west side of the building. That’s where Edgehill was shot prior to reaching the school’s entrance, DeFazio said, adding that he was pronounced dead at the scene.
When found, Edgehill had $120 beside his hand on the sidewalk, DeFazio said. The motive for the murder is not clear, although it is possible it was a robbery turned deadly. Edgehill had no weapon on him, DeFazio said. Investigators confirmed Edgehill had withdrawn money at the ATM, but would say only that the amount was not significantly more than the cash found at the murder scene.
There were few people in the area at the time of the shooting and the college was on spring break. Class was back in session yesterday and student Miles Riccardi said as soon as he arrived back at school yesterday morning he was told of the murder.
“I pulled up and I heard it from one of my friends,” said Riccardi. “It’s pretty scary.”
One of a pair of students walking into the college at about 10:45 a.m. yesterday said:“I’m from the hood so it don’t worry me.” His friend echoed him, saying: “Don’t worry me at all.”
Betsy Vorce, a spokeswoman for Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, said yesterday afternoon: “Our sympathies are certainly with his family.” Vorce said Edgehill worked at Lincoln Center as a security guard on the midnight shift since 2011.
Anyone with information on the murder is asked to call the Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office’s Homicide Squad at (201) 915-1345. Jersey City and Port Authority police are also working on the case.