Cause of death revealed in Temple University student’s murder; suspect has criminal past

Officials released the cause of death of a Temple University student, Jenna Burleigh, on Sunday, and revealed that the primary suspect in her killing has a criminal past. reports that a Wayne County coroner confirmed that Burleigh, 22, died from a combination of blunt force trauma and strangulation. The primary suspect, Joshua Hupperterz, 29, was charged for her murder and arraigned on Sunday morning in Philadelphia, where he learned he’ll remain behind bars without bail while awaiting his next hearing.

Authorities stated that Burleigh likely met Hupperterz at a Philadelphia bar off of Cecil B. Moore Avenue. Detectives searched Hupperterz’s apartment off of 1700 block of North 16th Street over the weekend, and discovered on his back door, kitchen sink, and on a trash can lid. On Saturday, Burleigh’s body was discovered at Hupperterz’s grandparents’ home in Paupack Township.

Investigators said that the suspect allegedly killed Burleigh in Philadelphia, moved her remains to his mother’s house in Jenkintown, and ultimately moved her body to his grandmother’s house in Paupack Township. Further,  Philadelphia Police Capt. John Ryan said that Joshua Hupperterz knew “elements of the crime.” A neighbor of Hupperterz told authorities there were screams coming from what seemed to be the suspect’s apartment at around 4 a.m. on Friday morning.

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Court records indicate that Hupperterz has a criminal past that includes a 2011 drugs possession conviction, and convictions in 2013 for theft from a motor vehicle.

Hupperterz faces charges of murder, abuse of a corpse, and additional crimes. He’s being held without bond.

Detectives revealed over the weekend that the incident did not appear premeditated and that although Hupperterz was the only person charged in connection with Burleigh’s death, that could change. Hupperterz’s roommate recently lawyered up, but it’s still unclear if the roommate is a person of interest in the case.

Check back with CrimeOnline as additional details emerge.

[Feature Photo: Handout]