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Ocean County Man Sentenced To Life Without Parole For 2013 Long Branch Murder

FREEHOLD: The following is a press release from the Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office:

An Ocean County man convicted last week of the murder and robbery of a Point Pleasant man was sentenced today to Life in prison without parole, announced Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher J. Gramiccioni.

Alan Bienkowski , 57 (DOB: 12/19/1958), will spend the remainder of his life in a New Jersey state prison without any possibility for release on parole after Monmouth County Superior Court Judge Ronald Lee Reisner imposed the sentence. Bienkowski was found guilty last week on all counts following a six-week trial before an all-female jury.

Bienkowski was convicted on Dec. 8, 2016 of first degree counts of Murder, Felony Murder and Armed Robbery; second degree counts of Unlawful Possession of a Weapon, Possession of a Weapon for an Unlawful Purpose and Certain Persons Not to Possess a Weapon; and third degree Receiving Stolen Property. The jury also found three aggravating factors for the charges that carry a mandatory sentence of Life Imprisonment with No Parole. One of those aggravating factors was based on Bienkowski's murder conviction obtained by the Ocean County Prosecutor's Office earlier this year.

It was learned at trial that the victim, Michael Wells, 56, of Point Pleasant, arrived just before 4 a.m. on April 10, 2013 at his workday at Dutch Prime Foods on West Avenue in Long Branch. As Wells walked to the front door to open the business he was hit in the back of the head by Bienkowski, who robbed him of cash before fleeing the area on foot. Wells chased after Bienkowski and the pair eventually came face-to-face in the backyard of a private residence on Cleveland Avenue. Bienkowski, armed with a stolen gun, shot and killed Wells in the backyard. Wells was discovered around 7:50 a.m. by the resident of 215 Cleveland Avenue.

A joint investigation by the Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office and the Long Branch Police Department resulted in Bienkowski's arrest on May 16, 2013 for the robbery and murder of Wells.

A year later, a man who had moved into the defendant's former Manchester Township residence discovered a gun buried in the yard. The gun was determined to be the murder weapon, and it was found to be stolen in 2010.

The case was prosecuted by Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutors Jennifer Lipp and Matthew Bogner.

Bienkowski was represented by Robert Konzelmann, Esq., of Howell.


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