Plainfield Man Indicted on Murder Charge

A local man has been indicted on charges he fatally stabbed a Plainfield resident earlier this year, acting Union County Prosecutor Grace H. Park announced Friday.

A Union County grand jury handed up a three-count indictment against 38-year-old Samuel Mata of Plainfield, who is charged with murder, possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose, and unlawful possession of a weapon.

Mata and the victim, 36-year-old Ricardo Castro, were seen together in an apartment on the 700 block of West Front Street in Plainfield late on the afternoon of June 29, according to Union County Assistant Prosecutor Al Cernadas, who is prosecuting the case. Minutes later, Castro was found unconscious outside of the apartment building, suffering from a stab wound, Cernadas said; he was rushed to Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in New Brunswick, where he was pronounced dead a little more than an hour later.

A joint investigation by the Union County Homicide Task Force and the Plainfield Police Division identified Mata as a suspect and led investigators to Danbury, Conn., where he was arrested on July 2.

These criminal charges are mere accusations. Each defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.