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NJ Man Who Killed Neighbor Loses Appeal

Bergen County Prosecutor's Office

An appeals court has upheld the conviction and life sentenced given to a New Jersey man who killed and dismembered his teenage neighbor.

Jonathan Zarate’s lawyer had presented a diminished capacity defense, claiming he was psychotic and had snapped when 16-year-old Jennifer Parks called his younger brother names in Randolph. But jurors needed only two hours to reject those arguments and convict him in 2008.

Police spotted Zarate, his brother and a friend trying to dump a trunk holding Parks’ remains into the Passaic River one day after the 2005 killing.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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