Khalil Wheeler-Weaver pleads not guilty to murder of Montclair resident Sarah Butler

The man accused of killing Sarah Butler, a college student from Montclair, pleaded not guilty in his first court appearance Tuesday morning. 

Khalil Wheeler-Weaver, 20, of Orange, has been held on $1 million bail since his arrest a week ago. 

Wheeler-Weaver was charged in connection with the death of Butler, whose body was found in the Eagle Rock Reservation in West Orange. Officials say he was charged with murder and disturbing human remains.

Butler, a student at New Jersey City University, was reported missing on Nov. 23 after she failed to come home after a night out. Acting Essex County Prosecutor Carolyn Murray says that Butler and Wheeler-Weaver encountered each other several times while out in Orange.

Murray says that the two knew each other, but says that they were not in a relationship.

Butler's body was found on Dec. 1 in Eagle Rock Reservation. Murray says that the body was found covered in leaves and other debris. Butler had been strangled. Her car was found several miles away.

Murray says that Butler was killed elsewhere and her body was dumped, but would not say exactly where she was killed.

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