Two charged in fatal stabbing of West Orange grandmother inside her home

By James Queally/The Star-Ledger 

WEST ORANGE — A West Orange woman and a Newark man have been charged with breaking into the home of a West Orange grandmother and stabbing her to death while the victim's granddaughter slept upstairs, prosecutors said.

Carline Inginac, 21, of West Orange, was arrested this morning and charged with murder, felony murder, robbery and weapons offenses in connection with the Sept. 3 death of Sandy Yuen, 57, inside her Chestnut Street home, Acting Essex County Prosecutor Carolyn Murray said.

Rakeem Scott, 18, of Newark, faces the same charges, but remains at large, said Thomas Fennelly, Essex County's chief assistant prosecutor.

Police discovered Yuen's body after receiving a call for medical aid from a family member, prosecutors have said. Yuen was stabbed in the throat. Her granddaughter slept through the entire attack and escaped unharmed, according to relatives.

"I believe my mom saved my daughter’s life," the victim's son, Jackie Yuen, said the day after the slaying.

Fennelly said Scott and Inginac knew each other before the attack, but said it was unclear if they knew Yuen. Fennelly said "it appears" Yuen was stabbed only once.

Prosecutors would not say which suspect stabbed Yuen.

Scott is being held at the Essex County Correctional Facility in lieu of $750,000 while Inginac is being held in lieu of $500,000, Murray said.

Yuen, who was married for more than 30 years, emigrated to the United States from Hong Kong more than a decade ago and worked as a cook at a hotel in Whippany.

Sandy Yuen lived at the home with her husband, son, daughter-in-law and granddaughter, relatives said.

Her funeral was held on Monday afternoon at a Livingston funeral home, according to Jackie Yuen.

The family is still reeling from the death of the grandmother, but the news of at least one of the arrests is a bit of a comfort, Jackie Yuen said.

"The police did their job, and I'm glad they did," the son said. "I hope they get the other person."

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