Man pleads in stray bullet death of sleeping NJ girl, 9

August 30, 2022 GMT

BRIDGETON, N.J. (AP) — One of the three remaining defendants in the death of a sleeping 9-year-old girl hit by a stray bullet in her New Jersey home four years ago has entered a plea in the case.

Charles Gamble, 22, pleaded guilty last week to a first-degree charge of aggravated manslaughter, reported Tuesday. At his upcoming sentencing in October, prosecutors are to recommend a 15-year prison term with a requirement that he must serve 85% of that time before being eligible for parole.

Authorities said several men opened fire on a group of people in Bridgeton in July 2018, missing everyone in the targeted group but sending a stray round through the rear wall of a nearby home and hitting Jennifer Trejo. Investigators found 19 bullet casings and said they believed three guns were used.

Leroy Frazier III, 24, was convicted in 2020 of aggravated manslaughter, conspiracy, attempted murder and aggravated assault, but the Cumberland County jury acquitted him of a murder charge. He was sentenced to 42 years in prison.

Jury selection has begun for the trial of the remaining two defendants, which is scheduled to begin next month.