Hudson County corrections officer charged in Newark homicide

NEWARK, NJ — A Hudson County corrections officer has been charged in a Newark double homicide as part of an investigation conducted by the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office Homicide/Major Crimes Task Force, which includes detectives from the Newark Police Department, according to a Feb. 17 press release from the ECPO.

John Menendez, a 24-year-old Hudson County corrections officer from West New York, has been charged with two counts of murder and weapons offenses. 

On Feb. 16, shortly after 9 p.m., a woman suffering from an apparent gunshot wound was found at Edison Place and Bruen Street in Newark. A second woman, also suffering from an apparent gunshot wound, was found on the 100 block of Haynes Avenue in Newark. The preliminary investigation indicates these are two related homicides at two different scenes.

The victims have been identified as Anna Shpilberg, 40, of Randolph, and Luiza Shinkarevskaya, 40, of Riverdale. Both were pronounced dead on the scene. 

Shinkarevskaya was discovered on the sidewalk at the Haynes Avenue location. She was pronounced dead at 9:53 p.m. Shpilberg, who is believed to have had a romantic relationship with the suspect, was in the passenger seat of her vehicle. She was pronounced dead at 9:55 p.m.

The investigation is active and ongoing. 

The charges against Menendez are accusations. All defendants are presumed innocent unless and until they enter a guilty plea or are found guilty beyond a reasonable double in a court of law.