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December 11, 2020

Woman stabbed to death at former New Jersey Congressman's estate

Brandon Petersen allegedly killed Michele Carkhuff while they were chopping vegetables Sunday

Police Investigations
Sen. Torricelli estate stabbing Thom Carroll/for PhillyVoice

Brandon Petersen was arrested Monday for allegedly stabbing to death Michele Carkhuff on Sunday on the estate of former U.S. Sen. Robert Torricelli.

A large New Jersey estate owned by former U.S. Sen. Robert Torricelli was the site of an alleged murder Sunday night. 

Brandon Petersen, 31, of Newton, allegedly stabbed to death 38-year-old Michele Carkhuff inside an apartment on the Hunterdon property, according to My Central Jersey. Two other people reportedly witnessed the incident.

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Petersen allegedly stabbed Carkhuff in the neck while they were chopping vegetables for stew. The pair had just taken drugs, reported. 

petersen muder new jersey

Brandon Petersen

The witnesses helped transport Carkhuff to the hospital where she died, while Petersen allegedly fled the scene in a pickup truck registered to Torricelli's lobbying and marketing firm. 

Police arrested Petersen on Monday in Upper Black Eddy, Bucks County, where he is incarcerated. He faces extradition and charges of first-degree murder and related charges. 

Petersen previously served 11 years in prison for stabbing a 57-year-old neighbor during an attempted robbery when he was 15. He was released in 2019. 

Torricelli, a Democrat who served in the Senate from 1997 to 2003, told that stabbing horrified him.

"It’s horrific," said Torricelli, who was at his home in Florida when the incident occurred. "It’s an incredible tragedy. My head is still spinning."

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