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Mom And 10-Year-Old Foster Daughter Found Slain In New Jersey Apartment

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JOAN COLBERT
Undated photos of Veronica Roach (left) and her foster mom, Joan Colbert. (Photos: Long Branch Police Department) | Long Branch Police Department
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The deaths of a woman and young girl whose bodies were discovered in a New Jersey apartment last week have been ruled homicides, police said.

The victims were identified by the Long Branch Police Department as Joan Colbert, 62, and her 10-year-old foster daughter, Veronica Roach.

Assistant Middlesex County Medical Examiner Dr. Diane Karlik completed autopsies on the pair Sunday, according to acting Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher Gramiccioni.

A family member reported finding the bodies at about 5 p.m. Friday, inside Colbert's first-floor apartment in Long Branch, police said.

Authorities have yet to release details on how the two were killed.

According to The Asbury Park Press, Colbert had raised the girl since she was 3 months old.

Colbert's close friend, Linda Smith, told the newspaper that Colbert was disabled and did not work.

"I can't even begin to imagine what happened. She was such a good, outgoing person," Smith said.

Authorities have not made any arrests in the double-homicide and they have yet to identify any potential suspects.

Monmouth County Crime Stoppers is offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to an arrest.

Anyone with information that could help solve the crime is asked to call the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office at (732) 577-8700, or the Long Branch Police Department at (732) 222-1000. Anonymous tips can also be called into the Monmouth County Crime Stoppers confidential telephone tip-line at (800) 671-4400.

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