RNJ News Department

Ex-teacher gets 30 years for murder of Patrick Gilhuley in Mount Olive Twp.

MOUNT OLIVE TOWNSHIP, NJ (Morris County) – Virginia Vertetis, 55, a former teacher, was sentenced Tuesday to 30 years in New Jersey State Prison after being found guilty of murdering a Staten Island man with whom she had a previous relationship.

Vertetis is required to serve the full 30 years without the possibility of parole. The prosecution of this matter was handled by the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office under the direction of Morris County Prosecutor Fredric M. Knapp.

“This is the worst of crimes,” said Morris County Assistant Prosecutor Matthew Troiano during the sentencing of Vertetis before Judge Stephen Taylor in state Superior Court in Morristown. Troiano, who was the lead prosecutor in the case, added that, “This type of violence is … permanent in every sense of the word.”

Vertetis was convicted by a Morris County jury on April 3 on the first degree charge of murder and the second degree charge of possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose.

This incident was first reported to police just before 10 p.m. on March 3, 2014, when officers with the Mount Olive Police Department responded to 2 Apollo Way in the Flanders section of the township after a 911 call by the victim’s daughter. Authorities found the body of Patrick Gilhuley immediately inside the front entrance of Vertetis’ home.

Gilhuley, a retired New York City police officer, was pronounced dead at the scene and Vertetis was arrested shortly afterwards. The investigation revealed that Vertetis fatally shot the victim within her home.

“The jury reached the just and proper verdict, and the defendant has now been sentenced for the senseless murder of Patrick Gilhuley,” Prosecutor Knapp said. “It is our genuine hope that this will bring some sense of closure to his family.”

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