Jackson man pleads guilty to shooting death of Manalapan resident

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A Jackson resident has pleaded guilty for his role in the shooting death of a Manalapan man in October 2019, Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher J. Gramiccioni announced.

On Aug. 6, Gerard A. Grimes Jr., 24, pleaded guilty to first degree aggravated manslaughter and second degree unlawful possession of a firearm before state Superior Court Judge Marc C. LeMieux, according to a press release from the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office.

Grimes admitted shooting five times at three men who were chasing after him. One shot struck and killed Narcisco Rodriguez-Corona, 43.

Grimes is expected to return for sentencing on Nov. 20. As part of his plea agreement,
prosecutors will recommend a 12-year sentence in state prison on the aggravated
manslaughter charge, subject to the provisions of the No Early Release Act which will require him to serve 85% of his imposed sentence before becoming eligible for release on parole, according to the press release.

Grimes would also be under parole supervision for five years following his prospective release from state prison. There will also be a recommendation for a seven-year state prison term to run concurrent with the other sentence included in his plea agreement, according to the press release.

The case involving Grimes’ co-defendants, Zoey S. Monte, 21, and Tyler J. Martucci, 23, both of Jackson, are still pending.

The case stems from an Oct. 5, 2019, call reporting shots fired with a victim. Manalapan police officers responded to the 9:34 p.m. call reporting a fight at 25 Fawn Run in a residential development off Union Hill Road the township.

Several minutes later, police received another call for a confirmed shooting victim.

Manalapan police officers arrived on scene and discovered Rodriguez-Corona suffering from a gunshot wound. He was transported to Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital, New Brunswick, where he was pronounced dead, according to the press release.

After receiving initial information regarding the incident, police officers began to search the area. A few hours later, police attempted a motor vehicle stop of Grimes’ vehicle, but he failed to stop.

Thereafter, Grimes fled the vehicle. Monte and Martucci were also in the vehicle and were arrested at that time. A short time later, Grimes was found in the backyard of a neighborhood residence, according to the press release.

A joint investigation by the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office and the Manalapan
Police Department revealed Grimes came to the Manalapan residence armed with a handgun. Grimes attempted to enter the residence while Monte and Martucci remained outside.

Residents of the home were alerted to Grimes’ presence and attempted to stop him from entering, resulting in a brief confrontation outside the home.

Shortly thereafter, a second encounter occurred nearby, during which Grimes ultimately shot Rodriguez-Corona. Grimes, Monte and Martucci all fled the area, according to the press release.

Monte was indicted on charges of burglary, conspiracy to commit burglary, unlawful possession of a handgun, possession of a firearm for an unlawful purpose, unlawful possession of a weapon and possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose.

Martucci was indicted on charges of burglary, conspiracy to commit burglary, unlawful possession of a handgun, possession of a firearm for an unlawful purpose, unlawful possession of a weapon and possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose.