FREEHOLD – The Long Branch man charged with the murder of a 16-year-old city girl Saturday will make his initial court appearance on Thursday, announced Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher J. Gramiccioni.

The victim is identified as Madison Wells, 16, of Cleveland Avenue in Long Branch.

Bryan Cordero-Castro, 20, of 4th Avenue in Long Branch, is scheduled to appear before Monmouth County Superior Court Judge James J. McGann at 9 a.m. on Thursday, Sept. 13, 2018. Cordero-Castro is charged with first degree Murder, third degree Possession of a Weapon for an Unlawful Purpose and third degree Attempted Escape related to the stabbing death of Wells. The incident occurred in the 200 block of Van Pelt Place in Long Branch. The victim and her assailant were known to each other.

Long Branch police responded to a 10:42 p.m. call reporting the stabbing at 284 Van Pelt Place, Long Branch. The juvenile victim was taken to Monmouth Medical Center in Long Branch where she died at 11:25 p.m.

No additional information is currently available.

Anyone with information about this case is asked to call Detective Wayne Raynor, of the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office at 1-800-533-7443 or Long Branch Police Detective Joseph Spitale at 732-222-1000.

If convicted of Murder, Cordero-Castro faces a minimum sentence of 30 years in a New Jersey state prison without parole and a maximum sentence of life imprisonment, subject to the provisions of the “No Early Release Act” (NERA) requiring him to serve 85 percent of the sentence imposed before becoming eligible for release on parole. He would also be under parole supervision for five years following his release from state prison.

If convicted of the third degree offenses, Cordero-Castro faces a sentence of three to five years in prison.

The case is being handled by Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutor Matthew Bogner.

Despite these charges, every defendant is presumed innocent, unless and until found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, following a trial at which the defendant has all of the trial rights guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution and State law.

#  #  #