Brother of man found dead with family in New Jersey house fire charged with murder

CLOSE

The brother of a man found killed with his entire family has been charged with four counts of murder.
Alex N. Gecan, @GeeksterTweets

COLTS NECK – Paul Caneiro, the brother of a man found killed with his family in a burning home, has been charged with murder, court records show.

Paul Caneiro, 51, of Ocean had been in custody already on suspicion of setting fire to his own home Nov. 20, the same day Keith Caneiro, 50 was found dead with his wife Jennifer, 45, their 11-year-old son Jesse and their 8-year-old daughter Sophia.

Paul Caneiro is now facing four counts of murder, a new count of aggravated arson – the same charge he faced in Ocean with regards to his own home – and two weapons charges, court records show.

The records do not specify the victims, but do indicate that the murders Paul Caneiro allegedly committed took place in Colts Neck on Nov. 20.

The Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office has indicated it will give new details in the quadruple homicide at a press event Thursday. Christopher Swendeman, a spokesman for county Prosecutor Christopher Gramiccioni, said early Thursday that he could not comment on the new charges until the press event.

Reached early this morning, Mitchell J. Ansell, one of Paul Caneiro’s attorneys, said he and his associate, Robert A. Honecker Jr., will have a statement on the new charges following this morning’s news conference at the prosecutor’s office.

Ansell and Honecker, of the Ocean Township law firm Ansell, Grimm and Aaron, have repeatedly asserted their client’s innocence.

“My client adamantly maintains his innocence and adamantly maintains that he would never hurt his family,” Ansell told the Asbury Park Press Wednesday night.

The family tragedy first came to light in two episodes on Nov. 20 – first when firefighters responded to Paul Caneiro’s Tilton Drive home in Ocean early in the morning, and then shortly after noon when other first responders rushed to Keith and Jennifer Caneiro’s Willow Brook Road home in Colts Neck.

In Ocean, the entire family living in the home made it out safely.

Not so in Colts Neck.

A neighbor’s groundskeeper smelled smoke and told his boss. The neighbor ran into Keith and Jennifer’s burning home to find a body face-down on the floor.

Keith Caneiro was found dead outside the home, shot several times.

Firefighters found Jennifer, Jesse and Sophia Caneiro inside the home, also dead and severely burned.

Photos of Keith Caneiro, his wife Jennifer, and children Jesse and Sophia are shown under candles during a vigil held outside the Colts Neck Town Hall Wednesday night, November 21, 2018.  The family was killed in a house fire the previous day.

Buy Photo

People gather outside the Colts Neck Town Hall Wednesday night, November 21, 2018, for a vigil to remember the Caneiro family killed in a house fire the previous day.

Buy Photo

People gather outside the Colts Neck Town Hall Wednesday night, November 21, 2018, for a vigil to remember the Caneiro family killed in a house fire the previous day.

Buy Photo

Toys and photos are among the items left outside the Colts Neck Town Hall Wednesday night, November 21, 2018, during a vigil to remember the Caneiro family killed in a house fire the previous day.

Buy Photo

Colts Neck firefighters gather outside the Colts Neck Town Hall Wednesday night, November 21, 2018, for a vigil to remember the Caneiro family killed in a house fire the previous day.

Buy Photo

People gather outside the Colts Neck Town Hall Wednesday night, November 21, 2018, for a vigil to remember the Caneiro family killed in a house fire the previous day.

Buy Photo

People gather outside the Colts Neck Town Hall Wednesday night, November 21, 2018, for a vigil to remember the Caneiro family killed in a house fire the previous day.

Buy Photo

Items sit on the steps outside the Colts Neck Town Hall Wednesday night, November 21, 2018, for a vigil to remember the Caneiro family killed in a house fire the previous day.

Buy Photo

Colts Neck Mayor J.P. Bartolomeo speaks from the steps of Town Hall Wednesday night, November 21, 2018, for a vigil to remember the Caneiro family killed in a house fire the previous day.

Buy Photo

People gather outside the Colts Neck Town Hall Wednesday night, November 21, 2018, for a vigil to remember the Caneiro family killed in a house fire the previous day.

Buy Photo

People gather outside the Colts Neck Town Hall Wednesday night, November 21, 2018, for a vigil to remember the Caneiro family killed in a house fire the previous day.

Buy Photo

People gather outside the Colts Neck Town Hall Wednesday night, November 21, 2018, for a vigil to remember the Caneiro family killed in a house fire the previous day.

Buy Photo

People gather outside the Colts Neck Town Hall Wednesday night, November 21, 2018, for a vigil to remember the Caneiro family killed in a house fire the previous day.

Buy Photo

People gather outside the Colts Neck Town Hall Wednesday night, November 21, 2018, for a vigil to remember the Caneiro family killed in a house fire the previous day.

Buy Photo

People gather outside the Colts Neck Town Hall Wednesday night, November 21, 2018, for a vigil to remember the Caneiro family killed in a house fire the previous day.

Buy Photo

People gather outside the Colts Neck Town Hall Wednesday night, November 21, 2018, for a vigil to remember the Caneiro family killed in a house fire the previous day.

Buy Photo

Autoplay

Show Thumbnails

Show Captions

Authorities have not specified how Jennifer, Jesse and Sophia died, only that they had been the victims of “homicidal violence” and that they had been “targeted.”

Ocean police charged Paul Caneiro that same day with aggravated arson.

The new charges, besides the four first-degree murder charges, include one new count of aggravated arson and one count each of possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose and possession of a handgun in the commission of a felony, court records show.

In happier times, the brothers had been business partners. Keith Caneiro’s first hire when he began his technology company in Brooklyn was Paul Caneiro.

Paul Caneiro was originally scheduled for a court appearance Wednesday but his attorneys requested a postponement until Friday to review new evidence.

Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher Gramiccioni reveals details in the Colts Neck quadruple murder and arson fire during a press conference in at the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office in Freehold, NJ Wednesday November 21, 2018. Behind him stand (L-R) Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutor Christopher Decker, Ocean Township Chief of Police Steven Peters, Monmouth County Deputy Chief of Detectives Douglas Johnson, Colts Neck Police Chief Frank Leccese, Monmouth County Sheriff Shaun Golden and Monmouth County Chief of Detectives John G. McCabe, Jr.

Buy Photo

Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher Gramiccioni reveals details in the Colts Neck quadruple murder and arson fire during a press conference in at the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office in Freehold, NJ Wednesday November 21, 2018. Behind him stand (L-R) Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutor Christopher Decker, Ocean Township Chief of Police Steven Peters, Monmouth County Deputy Chief of Detectives Douglas Johnson, Colts Neck Police Chief Frank Leccese, Monmouth County Sheriff Shaun Golden and Monmouth County Chief of Detectives John G. McCabe, Jr.

Buy Photo

Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher Gramiccioni reveals details in the Colts Neck quadruple murder and arson fire during a press conference in at the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office in Freehold, NJ Wednesday November 21, 2018. Behind him stand (L-R) Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutor Christopher Decker, Ocean Township Chief of Police Steven Peters, Monmouth County Deputy Chief of Detectives Douglas Johnson, Colts Neck Police Chief Frank Leccese, Monmouth County Sheriff Shaun Golden and Monmouth County Chief of Detectives John G. McCabe, Jr.

Buy Photo

Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher Gramiccioni reveals details in the Colts Neck quadruple murder and arson fire during a press conference in at the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office in Freehold, NJ Wednesday November 21, 2018. Behind him stand (L-R) Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutor Christopher Decker, Ocean Township Chief of Police Steven Peters, Monmouth County Deputy Chief of Detectives Douglas Johnson, Colts Neck Police Chief Frank Leccese, Monmouth County Sheriff Shaun Golden and Monmouth County Chief of Detectives John G. McCabe, Jr.

Buy Photo

Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher Gramiccioni reveals details in the Colts Neck quadruple murder and arson fire during a press conference in at the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office in Freehold, NJ Wednesday November 21, 2018. Behind him stand (L-R) Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutor Christopher Decker, Ocean Township Chief of Police Steven Peters, Monmouth County Deputy Chief of Detectives Douglas Johnson, Colts Neck Police Chief Frank Leccese, Monmouth County Sheriff Shaun Golden and Monmouth County Chief of Detectives John G. McCabe, Jr.

Buy Photo

Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher Gramiccioni reveals details in the Colts Neck quadruple murder and arson fire during a press conference in at the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office in Freehold, NJ Wednesday November 21, 2018. Behind him stand (L-R) Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutor Christopher Decker, Ocean Township Chief of Police Steven Peters, Monmouth County Deputy Chief of Detectives Douglas Johnson, Colts Neck Police Chief Frank Leccese, Monmouth County Sheriff Shaun Golden and Monmouth County Chief of Detectives John G. McCabe, Jr.

Buy Photo

Scene of a multiple fatal fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck, NJ Wednesday November 21, 2018.

Buy Photo

Scene of a multiple fatal fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck, NJ Wednesday November 21, 2018.

Buy Photo

Scene of a multiple fatal fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck, NJ Wednesday November 21, 2018.

Buy Photo

Scene of a multiple fatal fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck, NJ Wednesday November 21, 2018.

Buy Photo

The investigation continues Wednesday morning, November 21, 2018, at the scene of a fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck that left four people dead

Buy Photo

The investigation continues Wednesday morning, November 21, 2018, at the scene of a fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck that left four people dead

Buy Photo

The investigation continues Wednesday morning, November 21, 2018, at the scene of a fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck that left four people dead

Buy Photo

The investigation continues Wednesday morning, November 21, 2018, at the scene of a fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck that left four people dead

Buy Photo

The investigation continues Wednesday morning, November 21, 2018, at the scene of a fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck that left four people dead

Buy Photo

The investigation continues Wednesday morning, November 21, 2018, at the scene of a fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck that left four people dead

Buy Photo

The investigation continues Wednesday morning, November 21, 2018, at the scene of a fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck that left four people dead

Buy Photo

The investigation continues Wednesday morning, November 21, 2018, at the scene of a fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck that left four people dead

Buy Photo

Colts Neck firefighters respond to a house fire off of Willow Brook Road on Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2018, in Colts Neck.
Colts Neck firefighters respond to a house fire off of Willow Brook Road on Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2018, in Colts Neck.
Colts Neck firefighters respond to a house fire off of Willow Brook Road on Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2018, in Colts Neck.
Colts Neck firefighters respond to a house fire off of Willow Brook Road on Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2018, in Colts Neck.
Colts Neck firefighters respond to a house fire off of Willow Brook Road on Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2018, in Colts Neck.
Colts Neck firefighters respond to a house fire off of Willow Brook Road on Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2018, in Colts Neck.
Colts Neck firefighters respond to a house fire off of Willow Brook Road on Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2018, in Colts Neck.
Colts Neck firefighters respond to a house fire off of Willow Brook Road on Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2018, in Colts Neck.
Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher Gramiccioni holds a press conference to confirm four fatalities involved in the Colts Neck fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck, NJ Tuesday November 20, 2018.

Buy Photo

Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher Gramiccioni holds a press conference to confirm four fatalities involved in the Colts Neck fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck, NJ Tuesday November 20, 2018.

Buy Photo

Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher Gramiccioni holds a press conference to confirm four fatalities involved in the Colts Neck fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck, NJ Tuesday November 20, 2018. Behind him stand (L-R) Colts Neck Acting Police Chief Frank Leccese, Colts Neck Mayor JP Bartolomeo and Monmouth County Chief of Detectives John G. McCabe, Jr.

Buy Photo

Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher Gramiccioni holds a press conference to confirm four fatalities involved in the Colts Neck fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck, NJ Tuesday November 20, 2018. Behind him stand (L-R) Colts Neck Acting Police Chief Frank Leccese, Colts Neck Mayor JP Bartolomeo and Monmouth County Chief of Detectives John G. McCabe, Jr.

Buy Photo

Emergency personnel surround the scene of a multi-fatal fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck Tuesday, November 20, 2018.
Emergency personnel surround the scene of a multi-fatal fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck Tuesday, November 20, 2018.
Emergency personnel surround the scene of a multi-fatal fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck Tuesday, November 20, 2018.
Emergency personnel fill a street near the scene of a multi-fatal fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck Tuesday, November 20, 2018.
Emergency personnel surround the scene of a multi-fatal fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck Tuesday, November 20, 2018.
Scene of a multiple fatal fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck, NJ Tuesday November 20, 2018.

Buy Photo

Scene of a multiple fatal fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck, NJ Tuesday November 20, 2018.

Buy Photo

Scene of a multiple fatal fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck, NJ Tuesday November 20, 2018.

Buy Photo

Scene of a multiple fatal fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck, NJ Tuesday November 20, 2018.

Buy Photo

Multiple people were found dead as a fire burned at an estate in Colts Neck, NJ on Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2018. Reports said one of the bodies had been shot.
Multiple people were found dead as a fire burned at an estate in Colts Neck, NJ on Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2018. Reports said one of the bodies had been shot.
The scene of a fatal fire in Colts Neck on Nov. 20.

Buy Photo

Multiple people were found dead as a fire burned at an estate in Colts Neck, NJ on Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2018. Reports said one of the bodies had been shot.
The scene of a fatal fire in Colts Neck on Nov. 20.

Buy Photo

Asbury Park Press reporter Ken Serrano at the scene of a fatal fire in Colts Neck on Nov. 20.

Buy Photo

The scene of a fatal fire in Colts Neck on Nov. 20.

Buy Photo

The scene of a fatal fire in Colts Neck on Nov. 20.

Buy Photo

The scene of a fatal fire in Colts Neck on Nov. 20.

Buy Photo

The scene of a fatal fire in Colts Neck on Nov. 20.

Buy Photo

Crime scene tape surrounded a home on Tilton Drive in Ocean Township Tuesday afternoon.

Buy Photo

Scene of a multiple fatal fire at 15 Willow Brook Road in Colts Neck, NJ Tuesday November 20, 2018.

Buy Photo

Autoplay

Show Thumbnails

Show Captions

This is a developing story. Stay with app.com for updates.

MORE:

Paul Caneiro’s lawyer says his family will vouch for him

What we know about the Caneiro murders

Alex N. Gecan: @GeeksterTweets; 732-643-4043; agecan@gannettnj.com

Kathleen Hopkins: @KHopkinsapp; 732-643-4202; Khopkins@app.com 

Contributing: Andrew Goudsward

Read or Share this story: https://www.app.com/story/news/local/courts/2018/11/29/paul-caneiro-murder-charges/2146856002/

From The USA TODAY NETWORK

These sites are part of the USA TODAY NETWORK. Their content is produced independently from our newsrooms.

Read More

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: