William Jenkins, the brother of New York Giants cornerback Janoris Jenkins, has been charged with aggravated manslaughter for the death of Roosevelt Rene, the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office and Fair Lawn Police Department announced Wednesday.
According to authorities, William Jenkins is in custody in Ontario County, N.Y., and the investigation is ongoing, with no further details released.
Rene, a 25-year-old Jenkins family friend whose body was found at Janoris Jenkins’ New Jersey home Tuesday morning, had reportedly been living at the house recently. No cause of death has been indicated by authorities, although an NFL Network report on Tuesday said police were investigating a possible strangulation/suffocation.
Ontario County District Attorney James Ritts told TMZ earlier Wednesday that William Jenkins was “a person of interest” who Bergen County officials wanted to speak with as part of the investigation of Rene’s death.
TMZ had reported that while William Jenkins was a person of interest, he was not a suspect, saying, “Officials just want to know what he knows.”
TMZ also cited jail records in reporting that William Jenkins, 34, was arrested on an unrelated parole warrant in Ontario County in Canandaigua, N.Y., in the early hours of June 26 — approximately nine hours before Rene’s body was found. Ritts told TMZ that the older Jenkins would be transported to Bergen County, about 300 miles, via an extradition process.
Multiple reports since Tuesday have said police are treating the investigation as a homicide.
Multiple reports also have said Janoris Jenkins is not in New Jersey and has been staying in Florida since the Giants broke from their offseason practices, which ended June 14.
TMZ reported Tuesday the body was found in the basement by a person who was working on the house.
Authorities received a 911 call at 10:22 a.m. on Tuesday, Fair Lawn Police Sgt. Brian Metzler said. The body was removed from the property just before 8 p.m.
Janoris Jenkins, 29, is entering his third year with the Giants. The Pahokee, Fla., native played for Florida in college before finishing his career at North Alabama.
A Giants spokesperson confirmed the team is “aware of and monitoring the situation.”
—Field Level Media