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Prosecutor

Task Force Investigating Stabbing Death

The Union County Homicide Task Force and the Plainfield Police Department are investigating the stabbing death of a woman that occurred earlier this evening, announced Union County First Assistant Prosecutor Albert Cernadas, Jr.

Around 5:10p.m. police were summoned to 316 East 7th Street in Plainfield. When they arrived they found the victim on the scene suffering from multiple stab wounds, said Cernadas. A suspect was taken into custody and charges are currently pending.

At this point it appears to be an act of domestic violence, said Cernadas. The name of the victim will be released pending notification of her family. This remains an active investigation and additional information will be released as it becomes available.

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Woman charged in Elizabeth Homicide

The Union County Homicide Task Force has charged a Newark woman with the shooting death of an East Orange woman that occurred in Elizabeth on Sept. 22, 2011, announced Prosecutor Theodore J. Romankow.

Tiffany Moore (DOB: 9-19-90) a confirmed member of the Bloods street gang PIRU sect) has been charged with the murder of Felicia Hester,19, of East Orange said Romankow.

Hester was shot behind the Coco Bongo bar in Elizabeth around 2:00a.m. on September 22. She was taken to University Hospital in Newark in grave condition and succumbed to her injury at 5:10p.m. on Saturday, said Romanow.

During their investigation, the Homicide Task Force identified Moore as the suspect in the shooting and complaints were signed by Union County Superior Court Judge Joseph Donohue charging Moore with murder and weapon offenses. Her bail was set at $750,000.

Moore was served with the complaints at the Essex County Jail where she is being held on unrelated charges.

These criminal charges are mere accusations. The defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

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Task Force Investigating Rahway Homicide

The Union County Homicide Task Force is investigating the shooting death of a Middlesex County man that occurred earlier yesterday morning in Rahway, said Prosecutor Theodore J. Romankow.

On September 11, Donta Mickens (DOB 6-12-90) of Avenel NJ was found in the City of Rahway at approximately 2:30am . The victim was shot multiple times in the area of 305 Waite Street, Rahway. No arrests have been made and the Task Force continues to investigate with the Rahway Police Department.

Anyone with information relating to the death of Donta Mickens is urged to contact Task Force Detective Martin Costello at (908)347-3768 . Members of the public are reminded that they can remain anonymous. Additionally, those providing information leading to an arrest are eligible for financial reward through Union County Crime Stoppers by calling (908) 654-TIPS orwww.uctip.org

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Prosecutor

Rahway Woman Found Guilty of 2008 Kidnapping

A Rahway woman was convicted on two counts of 1st Degree Kidnapping earlier this week after abducting a 3-year-old child from an Elizabeth store in 2008, announced Prosecutor Theodore J. Romankow.

Yvonne Alexander, 57 was found guilty on Wednesday following a bench trial before Superior Court Judge Robert J. Mega, said Assistant Prosecutor John Esmerado who prosecuted the case.

Less than four hours after she abducted a child from the store on Broad Street in Elizabeth, members of the Elizabeth Police Department arrested Alexander, said Esmerado.

“It was an excellent investigation and outstanding police work,” said Romankow.

When investigators executed a search warrant of Alexander’s home they found a number of items relating to the crime, said Esmerado.

Alexander remains in the Union County Jail and faces up to 30 years in prison when she is sentenced on Dec. 2, 2011.

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Union County Grand Jury indicts Cranford Man

Earlier this morning a Union County Grand Jury indicted William Parisio, a Cranford man charged with killing his girlfriend earlier this year, announced Prosecutor Theodore Romankow.

Parisio (DOB 7/4/1988) is charged with Murder, Unlawful Possession of a Weapon and Possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose. A copy of the Indictment is attached to this release.

According to the investigation, on March 13, 2011 Parisio struck the victim, Pamela Schmidt, 22, of Warren, N.J. with a 12 lb. dumbbell and then strangled her. Parisio remains in the Union County Jail on $400,000.

Following the homicide several media outlets reported that the defendant’s rumored use “Bath Salts” – a now-illegal drug – might have played a role in the homicide. However, toxicology reports revealed no presence of the substance in the defendant following his arrest, said Romankow.

These criminal charges are mere accusations. The defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

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Plainfield Men Charged with Kidnapping and Sexual Assault

        

A Union County Grand Jury returned an eight count indictment against two Plainfield men yesterday, charging one with kidnapping and both with sexually assaulting a mentally disabled woman earlier this year, announced Union County Prosecutor Theodore J. Romankow. A copy of the indictment is attached to this release.

According to the investigation, Edward Woodson (DOB: 4/13/1980) of East Front Street in Plainfield had asked the then 30-year-old victim to come to his house around 9 p.m. on January 31, 2011 for a bible study, said Assistant Prosecutor Patricia L. Cronin, who is prosecuting the case. At the time, the victim was preparing for a baptism at a church frequented by both Woodson and the victim.

According to the investigation, Woodson brought the victim to his family’s home where he met up with a neighbor, Marcal Campbell (DOB: 9/21/1980). Together they brought the victim into the basement of the Woodson residence. The men then simultaneously sexually assaulted the victim, said Cronin.

The woman then spent the night sitting in a chair in Woodson’s bedroom, said Cronin. At 6 a.m. on February 1, 2011 Woodson forced the victim out of the house and into a falling snow. Not properly dressed for the elements, the victim spent at least two hours outside begging for a ride home from strangers. Eventually members of Woodson’s family found the freezing victim in the front of the house and arranged for and paid for a taxi to bring her home.

The victim reported the assault to relatives and she was taken to a local hospital for treatment, said Cronin.

A joint investigation was conducted by Plainfield Police Detective Ed Rivera and Union County Prosecutor’s Office Detective Brian O’Malley. Dozens of interviews were conducted, physical and biological evidence was collected and analyzed.

This remains an active investigation and anyone with information is urged to contact Det. O’Malley at (908) 965-3809.

Both Woodson and Campbell are being held at the Union County Jail on $300,000 bail.

These criminal charges are mere accusations. The defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

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Somerset Man Charged Following Golf Tournament

A Somerset County man was arrested and charged last week after he assaulted a Scotch Plains teenager following the Barclays Golf Tournament, authorities announced.

According to the investigation, Demesvar Jean-Baptiste DOB: 1/3/1973 of Watchung had attended the golf tournament on August 23, 2011 and paid to park his car at a residence near the tournament grounds, according to Assistant Prosecutor Michael Cleaver, who is prosecuting the case.

Around 7 p.m. Jean-Baptiste knocked on the door of a Raritan Road house in Scotch Plains that he mistakenly believed was where he parked his car earlier in the day, said Cleaver. A 14-year-old boy who answered the door at the residence, informed Jean-Baptiste that he had the wrong house.

At that point, according to the investigation, Jean-Baptiste forced his way inside the home, assaulted the boy and threatened to kill him, everyone in the residence and burn the house down, said Cleaver.

The boy was able to escape Jean-Baptiste’s grasp and made it to a neighbor’s house where the police were called. According to police reports, officers found Jean-Baptiste several doors away and detected the strong odor of alcohol on his breath.

He was taken into custody and later charged with 2nd Degree Burglary, 3rd Degree Terroristic Threats and 3rd Degree Aggravated Assault. He was released on $130,000 bail.

These criminal charges are mere accusations. The defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

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Prosecutor

Plainfield Man Convicted

A Plainfield man was convicted on several charges earlier today, including 2nd Degree eluding, 3rd Degree aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and 4th Degree Aggravated Assault on a police officer.

Eugene Lawton DOB: 8/20/1965 was found guilty following a bench trial before Superior Court Judge Stuart Peim, said Assistant Prosecutor Ann Marie Gibbons who prosecuted the case.

According to the investigation, Lawton was driving with a suspended license on Rt. 78 West in Berkeley Heights on July 16, 2010 when a New Jersey State Trooper attempted to pull him over. Lawton gave chase through five towns in both Union and Somerset Counties, said Gibbons. At one point in the pursuit, he drove his vehicle at a high rate of speed towards a trooper who was on foot. The chase ended after police lost sight of Lawton’s vehicle. He was arrested a day later by the New Jersey State Police.

Lawton faces up to 20 years in prison when he is sentenced on December 16, 2011.

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Prosecutor

Results of MusicFest Investigation

The Union County Prosecutor’s Office has concluded a five-month investigation concerning the 2010 MusicFest. The Prosecutor has determined there was insufficient evidence to warrant any criminal charges. In a letter to newly appointed County Manager Alfred Faella the Prosecutor strongly criticized the County and those responsible for the planning and management of the 2010 MusicFest.

The Prosecutor also made recommendations for any future events to insure transparency, proper management and to avoid any appearance of conflict. Attached is a copy of the letter and exhibits forwarded to Mr. Faella.

Click here to view the report

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Prosecutor

Plainfield Gang Members Charged

The Union County Homicide Task Force has a member of the MS13 street gang with a 2009 homicide in the city of Plainfield, announced Prosecutor Theodore Romankow. Additionally, two other gang members were charged in two other instances of violence in the city.

Yesterday, complaints were signed for Julian Moz-Aguilar, DOB 07-23-1987, of West Third Street, Plainfield NJ, who is already in custody at the Union County Jail. The charges stem from the February 08, 2009, homicide of Christian Tigsi, which occurred in the area of 209 North Avenue, Plainfield NJ. Moz-Aguilar is a member of the Plainfield MS13 group that was arrested following an investigation this past July in Plainfield. He is being held at the Union County Jail on $1 million bail.

Additinally, Josi A. Romero-Aguirre, DOB 04-27-1987, of Somerset Pl, North Plainfield, NJ and Esau Ramirez, DOB 05-04-1991, of West Front St, Plainfield NJ, were charged with conspiracy to commit murder, weapon possession, Ramirez was already in custody at the Union County Jail and is being held on $1 million bail. Romero-Aguirre was arrested around 3:45 p.m. yesterday in North Plainfield and is being held at the Union County Jail on $500,000 bail.

Finally, Ruben A. Portillo-Fuentes, DOB 01-08-1992, of Madison Avenue, Plainfield NJ, was charged with attempted murder, possession of weapon and unlawful possession of a weapon for the May 7, 2011, shooting in the area of the 700 block of West Third Street, Plainfield, NJ. He is being held on $1 million bail.

These criminal charges are mere accusations. The defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.