FBI now 'involved' in murder investigation of NJ Councilwoman Eunice Dwumfour

ByEyewitness News WABC logo
Friday, February 3, 2023
Councilwoman's personal, religious life looked into after murder
Police are searching for any motive in the murder of Sayreville Councilwoman Eunice Dwumfour on Wednesday night. Anthony Johnson has the story.

SAYREVILLE, New Jersey (WABC) -- A team of investigators is looking into every aspect of Sayreville Councilwoman Eunice Dwumfour's life - personal, professional, religious - as they search for her killer.

The FBI is now "involved" in the investigation, which includes Sayreville police and the Middlesex County Prosecutor's Office.

"We are aware of the investigation into the death of Councilwoman Dwumfour, in Sayreville Wednesday evening. We have talked with our local law enforcement partners at the Sayreville Police Department and the Middlesex County Prosecutor's Office. Should they ask us for any assistance, we will do all we can to help their investigation," the FBI said in a statement.

The 30-year-old was found inside her white Nissan SUV with multiple gunshot wounds on Samuel Circle just before 7:30 p.m., officials said.

They think her car traveled about 100 feet before slamming into two parked cars.

Dwumfour's life ended right outside her townhouse at the Camelot at La Mer apartment complex.

Though Dwumfour was a Newark native who still has family living there, she was living in Sayreville as a single mother. She had just recently married a pastor who lives in Nigeria.

Investigators are now asking questions about her ties to that church, but they're also digging into other relationships both personal and professional.

"She was happy with her new husband. It seems. Happy with her daughter, and she was living the life, the American dream. She was a beautiful motivated person, who did very well in the community," Dwumfour's former campaign manager Karen Bailey Bebert said. "I believe her daughter lit up her life. Jesus Christ lit up her life. She was very faithful and driven. She was a shining star."

Police received a tip that led them to bring police dogs to the woods behind the apartment complex in a search for the murder weapon.

Neighbors think they may have seen the gunman run off toward the garden state parkway.

Dwumfour was elected to the council in 2022. The Republican defeated an incumbent Democrat to begin a three-year term on the Borough Council and served as a member of the Sayreville Human Rights Council.

She was also a business analyst and part-time EMT.

Word of the killing spread quickly overnight through the political community in the state, which has some of the strictest gun laws in the country.

In December, Gov. Murphy signed legislation banning concealed carry in so-called sensitive places, in response to last year's Supreme Court decision. It was immediately challenged by several rulings that chipped away at the state's ability to enforce in certain locations. One was just handed down by a federal judge Monday.

Sayreville Police and Middlesex County officials are investigating the incident. No arrests have been made but some residents said they saw a person wearing a hooded sweatshirt run between two buildings and jump a fence to escape.

Murphy released the following statement, saying he was stunned.

"I am stunned by the news of Sayreville Councilwoman Eunice Dwumfour's murder last evening in an act of gun violence. Her career of public service was just beginning, and by all accounts she had already built a reputation as a committed member of the Borough Council who took her responsibility with the utmost diligence and seriousness. I send my condolences to Councilwoman Dwumfour's family and friends, her governing body colleagues, and the entire Sayreville community. Sayreville is a proud, tight-knit, and safe community and I know that it will come together, as it always has, in common purpose. The New Jersey State Police are supporting the ongoing investigation, and I urge anyone with information to contact either the Sayreville Police or the Middlesex County Prosecutor's Office."

The governor said on Thursday night that the shooting felt "very specific" but didn't appear to be politically motivated.

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