Brian Mertz, 30, has been arrested in the 2002 stabbing death of 22-year-old Jennifer Whipkey, Gloucester County authorities said today.

Gloucester County prosecutor Sean Dalton said Mertz lived in West Deptford and was arrested on charges of murder and sexual assault.

Whipkey, a single mother from East Greenwich, who worked at a Paulsboro pizza restaurant, was last seen about 3 a.m. on May 25, 2002, in the parking lot of the Adelphia Restaurant in Deptford.

Whipkey had gone dancing at the nightclub with her friends, but authorities believe she did not leave with them. Today, Dalton said the two met outside the club after it closed.

Whipkey's body was found a little more than 24 hours later in the woods behind the Westwood Motor Lodge in West Deptford. She was stabbed multiple times, authorities said.

Dalton said that DNA on the victim's body matched a sample from Mertz.

Contact staff writer Allison Steele at 856-779-3838 or asteele@phillynews.com.