Two New Jersey teens have been arrested and charged with the murder of their childhood friend, Sarah Stern, who was reported missing shortly after December 2.
Liam McAtasney is charged with "first-degree murder, felony murder, robbery, disturbing human remains, conspiring with another to disturb human remains and hindering prosecution," while Preston Taylor has been charged with "disturbing human remains, conspiring to disturb human remains and hindering prosecution." Both men are 19 years old.
Stern's car, a 1994 Oldsmobile Eighty-Eight Royale, was found on a bridge over the Shark River, with the keys still in the ignition and no noticeable damage that would've hindered its driveability.
The U.S. Coast Guard, the Monmouth County Sheriff's Dive Team and the State Police, among other agencies, all sent out search teams but none of them were able to locate any trace of the missing teen.
Groups of family, friends and concerend citizens began turning up to assist the authorities in the search for Sarah, including Liam McAtasney and Preston Taylor, but no evidence of her whereabouts could be found.
It's not reported what specifically made the two men suspects in the case, but police did take them into custody and a preliminary hearing has taken place. At the hearing, Assistant Monmouth County Prosecutor Meghan Doyle alleged that the men had a plan to attack Stern in the works for six months, and it's reported that Preston Taylor confessed to the crime of helping dispose of Stern's body.
Police believe that Liam McAtasney murdered Stern by strangling her and then hid her body in some bushes. Several hours later, they speculate, both men retrieved Stern's body, drove her car, with her body inside, to the bridge, threw the body off of the bridge and into the river, then left her car there.
At this time, it's reported that McAtasney and Taylor are being held without bond. It's unknown if they have secured legal counsel, or what plea they intend to enter.
Speaking with the Asbury Park Press, Sarah Stern's father said, "It's just unbelievable. Unfathomable. Deplorable. Disgusting."
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