MONROE (Middlesex) — A Middlesex County man was killed by his stepson after "chopping" his head, authorities said Thursday.

Christopher Ernst, 46, was found dead in the garage at his home on Garvey Drive on Wednesday after his employer called police when he failed to show up for work.

Ernst's stepson, Joao C. Torres, 26, was found in a wooded area several miles from the home, Middlesex County Prosecutor Andrew C. Carey said.

Carey said that Ernst was pronounced dead at his home. He had what he called "chopping wounds to the head" caused by a weapon police did not find.

Torres was being held at the Middlesex County Adult Corrections Center in North Brunswick.

Carey asked that anyone with information on the incident to call Monroe police at 732-521-0222 or the Prosecutor's Office at 732-745-3254.

Prosecutors did not release a photograph of the suspect on Thursday.

Contact reporter Dan Alexander at

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