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A New Jersey Apartment Complex Maintenance Worker Said He Complimented a Tenant. Now, He’s Accused of Her Murder.

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Source: Gloucester Township Police Department; UNSPLASH

May 13 2023, Published 1:04 p.m. ET

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A New Jersey maintenance man has been arrested for the cold case murder of a woman who lived in an apartment at the complex where he worked, authorities announced.

On the morning of May 10, the U.S. Marshals Service Camden Division took 59-year-old Joseph Grisoff into custody in connection with the slaying of Carol Reiff, 59, KYW-TV reported.

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On June 21, 2013, Reiff failed to show up for a family vacation and concerned relatives requested police in Gloucester Township conduct a wellbeing check at her unit in the Lakeview Apartment Complex.

Inside Reiff’s apartment, officers found her keys, and they located her vehicle still in the building’s parking lot.

Three days later, the missing woman’s decomposing remains were discovered near a maintenance building at the apartment complex.

An autopsy determined the victim's manner of death was homicide, but the coroner was unable to list a cause of death because of the body’s condition.

At the time, investigators recovered DNA evidence from a beer bottle inside the victim’s apartment as well as from her jeans, but forensic scientists were unable to come up with conclusive results.

Advances in DNA technology have now led to Grisoff’s arrest, said officials, who added that there is the “strong proposition that the victim and Grisoff were both contributors to DNA profiles obtained from the jeans and the beer bottle,” KYW-TV reported.

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According to police, Grisoff was interviewed after Reiff’s death and he allegedly told officers he would often see her since he worked maintenance and lived near her unit. He also told investigators he complimented her, but he denied he had ever been inside her apartment, police said.

The suspect in the cold case faces a first-degree murder charge.

“The Gloucester Township Police Department and the Camden County Prosecutor's Office have never forgotten about Carol Reiff,” Gloucester Township Police Chief David Harkins said after Grisoff’s arrest. “Since her disappearance on June 21, 2013, and the discovery of her body on June 24, 2013, we have worked to get justice for Ms. Reiff and her family.”

“We will use all means necessary to achieve justice and prosecute those responsible,” Harkins continued, adding, “It is our duty to be the voice for victims and their families, and we take this responsibility very seriously.”

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