DELAWARE TOWNSHIP — A sprawling rural property owned by former U.S. Sen. Robert Torricelli was the scene of a suspected murder involving drugs on Sunday.

Police say 38-year-old Newton resident Michele Carkhuff was stabbed to death by Brandon Petersen, 31, a violent ex-con who has spent most of his life behind bars since the age of 15 when he stabbed a woman and nearly killed her.

Petersen is accused of stabbing Carkhuff while they were chopping stew vegetables after both of them had taken drugs, according to a witness statement to police.

Michael Symons and Sergio Bichao contributed to this report.

Contact reporter Dan Alexander at or via Twitter @DanAlexanderNJ

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