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Double Murder In Maplewood Raises Questions And Concerns Over Hiring Child Caregivers

MAPLEWOOD, N.J. (CBSNewYork) - Police in New Jersey have made an arrest in a double murder case in Maplewood.

An au pair's boyfriend is now being accused of killing her and the owner of a popular comedy club in New York City.

911 calls capture the frantic emergency.

"What's your emergency?" the 911 dispatcher said.

"Someone needs to come immediately, someone is dying!" said the caller. "In the street, there's a woman dying. A guy in a green shirt is running away!"

Saturday morning the typically peaceful community of Maplewood woke up in a nightmare: Numerous 911 calls reveal the horror of the situation.

"You're going to be fine. Just hang in there please hang on, please stay here," the dispatcher said.

"I just ran outside. I think she is bleeding to death. I think she may already be dead," said the caller.

Police arrived on the scene and the worst was realized: A double murder on Walton Road.

Joseph Porter
Joseph D. Porter was arrested on Aug. 3, 2019, in connection to a double homicide in Maplewood, New Jersey. (Credit: Essex County Prosecutor's Office)

The victims: 40-year-old father of two David Kimowitz and his family's au-pair, 26-year-old Karen Bermudez-Rodriguez. Police say The murder suspect - the au-pair's boyfriend - entered the home using a key given to him by Bermudez-Rodriguez.

An unsettling fact of the case, to say the least, reported CBS2's Vanessa Murdock. The whole story has some parents asking: Is there any way to know for sure that I can fully trust the person caring for my family?

"I'm just very skeptical because, more than background checks, you need to know who you are leaving your children with," said Patricia Lynam of Bayonne.

Mom Temi Kolarova says she's been very fortunate to have the right person caring for her children.

"How did you decide the nanny you chose was the right person to care for your children?" Murdock asked.

"I think that is the most difficult question. I did have some fears that that's going to be a very difficult judgment to make," Kolarova said.

She interviewed several candidates, and spent time with them and her children, 5-year-old Mateus and 3-year-old Stella.

"I think that is the best you can do as a parent, and hope for the best," Kolarova said.

Tammy Gold - parenting expert and author of Secrets of the Nanny Whisperer - says hiring the right person is the most important decision for your children. Ask all the critical questions and then some. Make sure they can do your job.

"If you are using a service to hire a nanny or au pair, is it enough to go on their recommendation?" Murdock asked.

"The service only knows this person a couple hours more than you do," Gold said.

Don't just rely on them.

"Are they doing social media checks, are they doing background checks, drug checks, reference checks," Gold said. "You want to supplement and understand who this person is so you can safeguard your home and make sure you get what I call a good baseline assessment. So the best way to understand them is to spend time with them. "

She recommends a paid trial. With an au pair, that's not always possible.

"In that situation, do a lot of Skype calls," she recommends.

She suggests always using open-ended questions and always calling references.

"Be kind and warm, because most child care providers are wonderful people," Gold said.

Gold adds you should also be firm about what's important to you: That the safety of your children is paramount.

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