Vernon body dumping case opens

Full story: New Jersey Herald

Edward Mundt walked into the courtroom Monday afternoon, looked at the John Mitchell family and shook his head, appearing to profess his innocence.
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21 - 35 of 35 Comments Last updated Jul 29, 2012
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Friend of Johnny

Macungie, PA

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#23
Apr 22, 2008
 

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ilias wrote:
the guy is dead. he was found putrified near my house. ew. whatever...if it was drugs then good riddance. but sorry for the loss to te family. drugs rule these kind of peopel
I just hope that one day, one of your family members or someone close to you doesn't have the same thing happen. He isn't a kind of people, He was a friend and made stupid choices but was still a great person. Who are you to judge...your ignorant.
un cause

Bronx, NY

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#24
Jun 12, 2008
 

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Blame your self, The guy who fist interduced him to the shit at the Trade center is to blame. some uncle!!! you.
Shane on you!!!!
friend of the family

Malmö, Sweden

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#25
Jul 1, 2008
 

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Johnny was a beautiful person. Drugs, etc... that is really irrelevant: that is not WHO he was. People everywhere use stimulants, are addicted to something, are crazy in their own way, get into shit. But yes.... Johnny was an incredible person with a wonderful heart and member of a good and loving family. Those of you who preach about his drug problem and why the family didnt do anything obviously have no idea what went on in the family. WHO ARE U TO JUDGE? Judge yourself. He is missed and his death is a tragedy.
Watcher

Bronx, NY

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#26
Jul 10, 2008
 

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"Johnny was a beautiful person. Drugs, etc... that is really irrelevant"

No one here is judging Johnny, in my opinion, however this court case revolves around drug use.
Following the court case, the coroner says John overdosed. Was it wrong to bag and dump him. Yes, but that is not murder.
Watcher

Bronx, NY

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#27
Jul 11, 2008
 

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Man wants murder charges dropped

By TOM HOWELL JR.

A Bergen County man accused of suffocating an elevator repairman wants murder charges against him to be dismissed because his expert concluded the victim died of a drug overdose before the body was dumped in a Vernon gully, his attorney said Thursday.

Edward Mundt, 38, also was charged with desecration of human remains and hindering his apprehension after the death of 30-year-old John E. Mitchell, of Saylorsburg, Pa.

A county road crew found the body wrapped in blankets and plastic bags near Lake Wallkill Road and Stratfordshire Drive on June 16, 2006.

Mundt's public defender, David Nufrio, filed a motion to dismiss the first-degree murder charge, after a report by Maryland-based expert Dr. John Adams concluded Mitchell died from a drug-related accident, not homicide.

In his motion, Nufrio said it is "beyond comprehension" that it has taken more than seven months for the prosecution to turn over a responsive report -- based on a review of Adams' findings -- from the county medical examiner.

"Despite repeated requests for such information through counsel in court, nothing has been forthcoming and the indictment continues on track for trial with real opportunity to explore resolution," Nufrio said in the motion.

In court, Assistant Prosecutor Michael Briegel said his office is waiting for one item of evidence and will hand over its supplemental report to the defense.

Nufrio, in his motion, said the delay has had a prejudicial impact on Mundt, who is subject to a detainer on the Sussex charges when he completes a prison sentence out of Bergen County.

The court may address the motion at Mundt's scheduled court appearance in two weeks, depending on whether the supplemental report is produced, Nufrio said.

Nufrio has said the medical examiner's opinion could determine whether the case goes to trial.

If convicted at trial, Mundt faces a maximum sentence of life in prison for murder -- plus 15 years for the other two charges -- and must serve 71 years before he is eligible for parole.

Family members last saw Mitchell alive on June 7, 2006, when his father dropped him off on 42nd Street in Manhattan, authorities testified in November 2006.

Mitchell usually caught a train from the city street to his job with Gotham Construction on Roosevelt Island, they said.

His body was discovered a little more than a week later with a plastic bag taped over his head. The body was wrapped in a burgundy-pink comforter, olive green linens, and a pillowcase decorated with a "winter farm scene," detectives said.

Family members have said the defense's assertions of an overdose would not explain why a bag was placed over Mitchell's head.

According to an affidavit, Mundt said he picked up Mitchell at a Jersey City-area motel the night of June 8 and took him to his Elmwood Park apartment after purchasing drugs.

Mundt told detectives he slept in his bed that night, while Mitchell slept in a chair and was gone the next morning.

Detectives showed pictures of linens from the crime scene to Mundt's landlord, a woman who resides at the same address as Mundt.

She located a pillowcase on her bed with the same pattern, authorities said.

Mundt is serving a five-year term at South Woods State Prison for burglary and receiving stolen property in Bergen County. He was sentenced in March after admitting to break-ins at stores and a pizzeria, authorities said.

Mundt is earning "gap-time" credit on his Sussex County charges and will return to the county jail in Newton on $825,000 bail if he is paroled from state prison, Nufrio has said.
Watcher

Bronx, NY

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#28
Jul 11, 2008
 

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Man wants murder charges dropped


By TOM HOWELL JR.

thowell@njherald.com

A Bergen County man accused of suffocating an elevator repairman wants murder charges against him to be dismissed because his expert concluded the victim died of a drug overdose before the body was dumped in a Vernon gully, his attorney said Thursday.

Edward Mundt, 38, also was charged with desecration of human remains and hindering his apprehension after the death of 30-year-old John E. Mitchell, of Saylorsburg, Pa.

A county road crew found the body wrapped in blankets and plastic bags near Lake Wallkill Road and Stratfordshire Drive on June 16, 2006.

Mundt's public defender, David Nufrio, filed a motion to dismiss the first-degree murder charge, after a report by Maryland-based expert Dr. John Adams concluded Mitchell died from a drug-related accident, not homicide.

In his motion, Nufrio said it is "beyond comprehension" that it has taken more than seven months for the prosecution to turn over a responsive report -- based on a review of Adams' findings -- from the county medical examiner.

"Despite repeated requests for such information through counsel in court, nothing has been forthcoming and the indictment continues on track for trial with real opportunity to explore resolution," Nufrio said in the motion.

In court, Assistant Prosecutor Michael Briegel said his office is waiting for one item of evidence and will hand over its supplemental report to the defense.

Nufrio, in his motion, said the delay has had a prejudicial impact on Mundt, who is subject to a detainer on the Sussex charges when he completes a prison sentence out of Bergen County.

The court may address the motion at Mundt's scheduled court appearance in two weeks, depending on whether the supplemental report is produced, Nufrio said.

Nufrio has said the medical examiner's opinion could determine whether the case goes to trial.

If convicted at trial, Mundt faces a maximum sentence of life in prison for murder -- plus 15 years for the other two charges -- and must serve 71 years before he is eligible for parole.

Family members last saw Mitchell alive on June 7, 2006, when his father dropped him off on 42nd Street in Manhattan, authorities testified in November 2006.

Mitchell usually caught a train from the city street to his job with Gotham Construction on Roosevelt Island, they said.

His body was discovered a little more than a week later with a plastic bag taped over his head. The body was wrapped in a burgundy-pink comforter, olive green linens, and a pillowcase decorated with a "winter farm scene," detectives said.

Family members have said the defense's assertions of an overdose would not explain why a bag was placed over Mitchell's head.

According to an affidavit, Mundt said he picked up Mitchell at a Jersey City-area motel the night of June 8 and took him to his Elmwood Park apartment after purchasing drugs.

Mundt told detectives he slept in his bed that night, while Mitchell slept in a chair and was gone the next morning.

Detectives showed pictures of linens from the crime scene to Mundt's landlord, a woman who resides at the same address as Mundt.

She located a pillowcase on her bed with the same pattern, authorities said.

Mundt is serving a five-year term at South Woods State Prison for burglary and receiving stolen property in Bergen County. He was sentenced in March after admitting to break-ins at stores and a pizzeria, authorities said.

Mundt is earning "gap-time" credit on his Sussex County charges and will return to the county jail in Newton on $825,000 bail if he is paroled from state prison, Nufrio has said.
Watcher

Bronx, NY

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#29
Jul 25, 2008
 

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A judge today dropped a murder charge against a defendant after a Sussex County medical examiner changed her opinion that the victim could have died from a cocaine overdose and not asphyxiation from a plastic bag taped over his head, as her autopsy previously determined.

Superior Court Judge N. Peter Conforti, sitting in Newton, dismissed the murder charge against Edward Mundt of Elmwood Park, who had been charged two years ago with killing John Mitchell of Saylorsburg, Pa., and dumping his body in Vernon.

Mitchell, who worked as a union elevator mechanic in New York City, had last been seen by his family on June 7, 2006, when he went to work, and was a friend of Mundt.

Mitchell's body was found June 16, 2006, off rural Route 667 in Vernon by Sussex County road workers who were clearing brush. Mitchell was bound with a black nylon strap around his feet. A plastic bag over his head was secured around his neck with packing tape and the body was wrapped in a comforter and pillowcase, police had said.

An autopsy by Sussex County Medical Examiner Margaret Prial determined the cause of death was asphyxiation and the manner of death was a homicide. Authorities charged Mundt with killing Mitchell in Mundt's apartment on June 8 or 9, 2006, and transporting the body to Vernon and dumping it there.

However, another doctor, John Adams of Maryland, who was retained by defense attorney David Nufrio to review the case, disputed Prial's findings. Adams found that toxicology reports showed evidence of cocaine use; the wrapping of Mitchell's body was "more suggestive of packaging rather than restraint;" and the advanced decomposition of the body that led to insect activity indicated the bag was put over Mitchell's head after he died and did not cause his death.

As a result of Adams' report, Prial in May changed her own determination on the cause and manner of death to both "undetermined." Assistant Sussex County Prosecutor Michael Briegel then had the case reviewed by Warren County Medical Examiner Isidore Mihalakis, who largely agreed with Adams. Briegel then agreed the murder charge should be dismissed.

"These medical reports are pretty strong in their rationale indicating cocaine as the cause of death, and not asphyxiation," Conforti said in dismissing the murder charge.

Briegel said after court that Prial's "changing her opinion from homicide to undetermined is extremely unusual."

The murder charge was dismissed "without prejudice," meaning the state could file the charge again if new evidence arises, however, Nufrio said that is unlikely.

Meanwhile, two other offenses against Mundt remain, including second-degree unlawfully moving, disturbing or concealing human remains and third-degree hindering apprehension, and a trial date for those charges has been set for September. He remains held in state prison on $825,000 bail, on the Sussex charges and a burglary charge in Bergen County.

Mitchell's family and friends, 10 of whom attended the hearing, were not happy with the turn of events, and coming as the case was on the verge of going to trial.

A married father of three young children, Mitchell struggled with cocaine addiction but was a good father and husband, his family said. He had met Mundt in a drug rehab program a few months before his death, and Mundt, who also was an elevator mechanic, had been welcomed in Mitchell's home, his mother, Patricia Mitchell said.

She said she spoke to Mundt on June 9, 2006 about her son's whereabouts, and Mundt feigned ignorance and concocted a story about how Mitchell went off to find someone else.

"He just totally lied. He said when he got up that morning, Johnny was gone," Patricia Mitchell said. "He was supposed to be a friend. My son was a good boy. If the shoe was on the other foot, he would have called 9-1-1."
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Interested

United States

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#30
Sep 25, 2008
 
What was the outcome?
I know Ed Mundt well

Selden, NY

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#31
Sep 30, 2009
 
jers wrote:
No disrepect but are you out of your fuckin mind? If he OD how the fuck did they find his body dumped on the highway, with a bag over his head and strangalation marks on his neck. I knew John for all his life and he didnt commit suicide. I knew where John was supposed to be the night it happened and yes he was with Eddie that night because they were supposed to meet someone i knew!! I can't believe you would say something as stupid as you did. You obviously dont know the facts in this case and are going off wat your HEARING and not what you know. Please have your facts straight before making assanine statements as the one you have made
I KNOW ED MUNDT WELL...HE IS A DRUG ADDICT..PERIOD..I AM TIRED OF THIS IGNORANCE..HE PANICKED AND WAS AFRAID OF TRACE EVIDENCE SO THE BODY WAS PACKAGED THE WAY IT WAS..
Drago

Syosset, NY

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#32
Oct 21, 2009
 
The saddest thing is to see all the friends of the Victim/User fervently denying that it was drugs, screaming murder as loud as they can. Sure no one likes to think a friend/family member offed themselves on drugs. I've had one in my family too. I'd be pissed if we started pointing fingers at innocents in our desire to preserve our memory of the guy though.
a person

Trenton, NJ

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#33
May 6, 2010
 
Drago, no one is denying that the victim was not on drugs. Besides, the guy was convicted for dumping the victims body on the side of a fucking road with a bag tapped around his head. It does not matter if it was murder or not because he is GUILTY of desecrating human remains and hindering apprehension. The guy is a SCUMBAG whether he killed or not. At this point it does not even matter, but he caused so much pain to so many people for doing what he did......murder, or not.
Chaka

Greenwich, CT

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#36
Feb 9, 2011
 

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A great public service was done!
Nikki

Tobyhanna, PA

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#37
Jul 19, 2011
 

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This may be late but to read these comments about my dear friend johnny is disgusting no matter what the lifestyle he didn't deserve to be tied up bagged up and left on a side road to rot because of this a- hole who if he says Johnny died of overdose then why panic and then to be a so called friend and being in johns family house is even more disrespectful I hope one day karma gets this dude for his actions on my friend RIP jun jun we ALLmiss u terribly eastpak forever
Dee Nice

Greenwich, CT

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#38
Dec 29, 2011
 

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Nikki wrote:
This may be late but to read these comments about my dear friend johnny is disgusting no matter what the lifestyle he didn't deserve to be tied up bagged up and left on a side road to rot because of this a- hole who if he says Johnny died of overdose then why panic and then to be a so called friend and being in johns family house is even more disrespectful I hope one day karma gets this dude for his actions on my friend RIP jun jun we ALLmiss u terribly eastpak forever
Is a G thing Bitch! shut you hole
Nikki

New York, NY

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#39
Jul 29, 2012
 

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Dee Nice wrote:
<quoted text>
Is a G thing Bitch! shut you hole
Wow! Dee "NOT" Nice
G thing, really?? U shouldn't even speak w/ur g shit nonsense!!! What can u bring to this topic besides ignorance?? John i see you have haters even though u r in heaven...sleep in peace! I pray they dont ever go thru what we all had to endure with the loss of our friend/family! Smdh

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