Man charged in the murder of Toms River girl

15-year-old victim found dead in basement of her house
March 19, 2008 3:26:27 PM PDT
A 24-year-old man was charged with murder in connection with the death of a 15-year-old Toms River girl. Eyewitness News is told the suspect may be related to the victim.

Police say Garry Steven Zigich Jr. of 355 Colonial Drive was charged with murder. Zigich was placed under arrest at 4 a.m. this morning by Toms River police.

His initial bail was set at $500,000, and a court appearance before an Ocean County judge was set for 1:30 p.m. this afternoon

Zigich's address is the same as the 15-year-old victim, Brittney Cena. According to reports, he was renting a room at the home.

Eyewitness News is told Cena was discovered dead in the basement at around 6 p.m. last night by her grand parents.

The girl attended Toms River High School North, where counselors are on hand.

The victim's cousin spoke to Eyewitness News and said, "I can't believe she's gone, my cousin meant the world to me."

There is still no word as to what sparked the murder.

Ocean County Prosecutor Marlene Lynch Ford and Toms River Police Chief Michael Mastronardy will reveal more information at a 12:30 p.m. news conference.

Stay with Eyewitness News and for the more on this story.