Prosecutors say that a man who is accused of killing a New Jersey resident and who is also suspected in the deaths of four others in New Mexico, including his ex-wife, admitted to killing a total of 16 people.
NJ.com reported that Assistant Gloucester County Prosecutor Alec Gutierrez, during a detention hearing for the New Jersey case Friday, said that 47-year-old Sean Lannon said he killed 66-year-old Michael Dabkowski, Lannon’s youth mentor who he has accused of sexually abusing him as a child.
In addition to Dabkowski’s killing, who was found beaten to death in his home on March 8, prosecutors argued that Lannon also confessed to killing his ex-wife, 39-year-old Jennifer Lannon, as well as others, including “11 other individuals who were drug dealers.”
“He admitted to killing a total of 16 people … 15 being in New Mexico and one in the State of New Jersey. It’s my understanding that the FBI is assisting New Mexico in their investigation,” Gutierrez said Friday, according to NJ.com.
Court documents noted that Lannon confessed to the killings in a phone call with a family member, who then reported the admission to Gloucester County investigators.
In the call, Lannon allegedly said he “murdered his wife and her boyfriends in New Mexico,” as well as Dabkowski in New Jersey. He also reportedly expressed remorse for his actions, NJ.com noted.
Lannon and his wife had three kids together and moved from New Jersey to New Mexico before divorcing in 2019.
Prosecutors argue that Lannon admitted to luring several victims to a New Mexico home, where he dismembered some of them.
While police have already connected Lannon to five deaths — Dabkowski, along with his wife and three others whose bodies were found at Albuquerque International Sunport airport — Police Lt. David Chavez in Lannon’s hometown of Grants, N.M., said there was currently no evidence tying Lannon back to the killings of 11 others.
“Is it possible? Sure it’s possible. Is it probable? No, probably not,” Chavez told the Albuquerque Journal, though he added that police are investigating the matter.
Lannon was arrested in St. Louis last week following a multi-state search by police. According to The Associated Press, he was found driving a car stolen from Dabkowski.
Lannon has been charged with first-degree murder, as well as burglary, robbery and theft in the New Jersey case.
As of Saturday, Lannon has also been named a person of interest in the death of his ex-wife and the three others in New Mexico, the AP reported.
While Lannon’s public defender on Friday attempted to argue that his absence of prior convictions and service in the U.S. Army qualified him for pretrial release, the local judge sided with prosecutors in keeping Lannon behind bars because he “is a significant danger to the community,” according to NJ.com.