What to Know
- A neighbor who reported the Colts Neck mansion fire last month made a grisly discovery when he reached the property, according to a 911 call
- The neighbor told the 911 dispatcher that smoke was coming out of the house located behind his property and saw a person laying down
- The dispatcher told him to see if the person needed assistance, when the neighbor reached the property he found "a corpse," he says in call
One of the neighbors who reported the Colts Neck mansion fire last month made a grisly discovery when he reached the property, according to a 911 call.
The neighbor told the 911 dispatcher that smoke was coming out of the house located behind his property.
“I see the smoke from behind – neighbors behind me,” he is heard telling the dispatcher. “There is smoke coming out and I see a person laying down.”
The dispatcher told him to see if the person laying down needed assistance. It was at that point that the neighbor apparently made his way to the property and came across the grisly discovery — a body outside of the mansion.
Authorities would subsequently report that Keith Caneiro was found shot to death outside the home, while his wife and children were found inside the residence.
“Oh, my God, there’s blood here,” the neighbor is heard saying in the 911 call. “It’s a corpse. Somebody is dead.”
The dispatcher advised him to leave the property and get to a safe location.
In another 911 call, another neighbor, this time across the street, also reported seeing heaving smoke coming from the mansion.
Colts Neck is a well-to-do community about 50 miles south of New York City and is home to horse farms. Typical homes in the town of 10,000 are valued at about $750,000. Bruce Springsteen owns an estate there, and his son is a former member of the fire department. Former "Daily Show" host Jon Stewart and his wife operate an animal sanctuary there; Queen Latifah sold her mansion there in 2015.
Authorities say Paul Caneiro shot his brother, Keith, shot and stabbed his sister-in-law, Jennifer, and stabbed the children before dawn Nov. 20, then set the mansion on fire and returned home in Ocean Township to set fire to his own home as his wife and two adult daughters slept upstairs. They all escaped. After his arrest in that fire the next day, his lawyers said his family believed he had rescued them.
They were not in court Nov. 30, lawyer Robert Honecker said, because their testimony wasn't needed when Caneiro waived a detention hearing. A judge ordered him to remain at the Monmouth County jail at least until a hearing in late January.
The Caneiro brothers had started a computer consulting business in Brooklyn that had grown to have 26 employees by 2001, with clients including Citibank. They had renamed it Square One, and moved to the quieter New Jersey suburbs. They married and started families - with each brother standing up for the other at their weddings - and added a pest control company along the way.
Paul Caneiro was lately a frequent presence at their small offices in Asbury Park, where Square One now had just a few employees, while Keith Caneiro more often worked from home.
Prosecutors haven't elaborated on the alleged financial motives behind the crimes. They said Paul Caneiro set the fire at his own home to destroy evidence and to make it appear someone was targeting his extended family. He was at the police station being interviewed about that fire when the smoldering fire erupted at his brother's house just after noon, hours after investigators think it was set, and the bodies were discovered.