Virginia man charged with Sayreville councilwoman's slaying not due in NJ for weeks

The Virginia man charged with the murder of Sayreville Councilwoman Eunice Dwumfour is not expected to be returned to New Jersey for several weeks.

The extradition hearing for Rashid Ali Bynum, 29, of Portsmouth, Virginia, is scheduled for June 29.

Court records do not indicate which judge will be handling the case, but Erik Mussoni, the Chesapeake Public Defender's Office's senior trial attorney, is listed as his lawyer.

Bynum was arrested last week in Chesapeake City, Virginia and charged with murder, unlawful possession of a handgun and possession of a handgun for an unlawful purpose in the February killing of Dwumfour, a Republican and Sayreville's first Black elected official.

A warrant for Bynum's arrest was authorized May 29 by a Superior Court judge in Middlesex County, according to the criminal complaint.

Bynum has already had two court appearances in Virginia, an arraignment on May 31 and a bond hearing on June 2, both of which were continued, according to court records.

No motive for the killing has been announced and the investigation continues.

Former Sayreville Councilwoman Eunice Dwumfour
Former Sayreville Councilwoman Eunice Dwumfour

In his first Facebook post since Bynum was arrested and charged, Dwumfour's husband, Ezechukwu Peter Akwue, who goes by Eze Kings on social media, referenced that the people responsible for her death can run, but cannot hide. The post also featured a photo of the couple both wearing light-colored suit jackets.

On Feb. 1 Sayreville police received several 911 calls reporting a shooting in the area of Check Avenue in the Parlin section of the borough. When officers arrived, they found Dwumfour in her vehicle outside her home with multiple gunshot wounds. She was pronounced dead at the scene.

Surveillance video captured a suspect fleeing the scene in the area of Ernston Road, and witnesses reported seeing a thin man, about 6 feet tall with ear-length braids or dreadlocks and a suspicious white Hyundai on Gondek Drive minutes before the shooting. Video footage showed a person walking from the vehicle on Gondek Drive toward Check Avenue just before the shooting.

More: Sayreville councilwoman Eunice Dwumfour's life 'embodied the American Dream'

Court papers describe an "extensive investigation" during which it was determined a cellphone associated with Bynum traveled from Virginia to New Jersey and then back to Virginia on Feb. 1, and the phone was in the area of Gondek Drive and Ernston Road just before the shooting.

In Dwumfour's cellphone, investigators found a listing for "King Rah FCF," with the acronym believed to stand for Fire Congress Fellowship, a church the councilwoman had previously been associated with, which is also associated with Champion Royal Assembly, her latest church, the criminal complaint says.

The investigation also revealed that on the day of the slaying, Bynum allegedly searched the internet for information about Sayreville, Champion Royal Assembly Church, and the types of magazines compatible with a certain handgun.

Records also showed Bynum's cellphone traveled through E-ZPass locations in Newark, Woodbridge and Linden at the same time as a white Hyundai Elantra with a Virginia license plate. Police learned one of the registered owners of the vehicle had listed it online for rent, and Bynum's cellphone records indicate he contacted the vehicle owner the day before the slaying, according to the criminal complaint

A handgun was recovered at a Smithfield, Virginia address that Bynam apparently returned to after the shooting, according to the Middlesex County Prosecutor's Office.


Suzanne Russell is a breaking news reporter for covering crime, courts and other mayhem. To get unlimited access, please subscribe or activate your digital account today.

This article originally appeared on Eunice Dwumfour murder: Extradition hearing set for Rashid Ali Bynum