December 18, 2019
TRENTON — A Mercer County grand jury returned a nine-count indictment this week charging Billy M. Woodard, 54, in connection with five residential burglaries in Mercer and Middlesex counties, Mercer County Prosecutor Angelo J. Onofri announced. The charges include three counts of burglary in West Windsor Township and two counts of burglary in Plainsboro Township.
In September 2019, a Mercer County grand jury returned a 55-count indictment charging Woodard with 19 burglaries in West Windsor, four in Robbinsville, six in Princeton, four in Lawrence and two in Hopewell. He was also indicted on many third- and fourth-degree theft charges related to the burglaries.
Assistant Prosecutor Kathleen M. Petrucci presented both cases to the grand jury.
Prosecutor Onofri stated that, between June 2018 and May 2019, West Windsor Township and surrounding jurisdictions were inundated with a rash of residential burglaries. A comprehensive and massive investigation was conducted by the West Windsor Police Department’s Detective Bureau, under the leadership of Chief Robert Garofalo, to determine if they were the acts of the same person or persons, and to identify those responsible and apprehend the culprits. The exhaustive efforts led to identifying Woodard as the lone actor in more than 20 residential burglaries during the aforementioned time frame. In almost every single case, the burglaries took place while the residents were at home and asleep.
During the extensive investigation, lead West Windsor Detectives Eric Woodrow and Jason Jones sought assistance from the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office Special Investigations Unit (SIU). Ultimately, Woodard was apprehended during the commission of a residential burglary in Lower Makefield Township, Pennsylvania, on May 30, 2019. He remains in custody in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, and is charged with numerous burglaries in that jurisdiction.
“Although Woodard has been linked to 22 residential burglaries in West Windsor Township, the investigation is ongoing,” Chief Garofalo said. “The Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office and the WWPD ask residents to continue your vigilance and be observant and considerate to your neighbors. If you feel something is abnormal in your community, please don’t hesitate to contact your local police department immediately.”
Prosecutor Onofri and Chief Garofalo thanked the following agencies for the support and resources provided during the investigation:
- West Windsor Police Department
- Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office
- Hopewell Township Police Department
- Lawrence Township Police Department
- Princeton Police Department
- Robbinsville Township Police Department
- Plainsboro Township Police Department
- Lower Makefield Township (PA) Police Department
Despite having been indicted, every defendant is presumed innocent until found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.