Two men have been arrested and charged in connection with the homicide that occurred in Plainfield on Thursday, acting Union County Prosecutor Grace H. Park announced Friday.
Abdul Ward, 23, is charged with murder, multiple weapons offenses, and eluding police while 24-year-old Arthur Negron is charged with several related weapons offenses in connection with the shooting death of 31-year-old Wilson Valdez of Plainfield.
It was shortly after 2:30 p.m. Thursday when Plainfield Police Division units rushed to the 600 block of Berckman Street on a report of a shooting, according to the investigation. Valdez, who had been working in a convenience store at the time of the incident, was pronounced dead shortly thereafter.
Arriving Plainfield patrol units spotted the defendants’ vehicle leaving the scene of the shooting, and a brief pursuit ended when the vehicle collided with an SUV at the intersection of Central Avenue and West Sixth Street. A handgun was recovered from the vehicle and Ward and Negron were subsequently taken into custody, with state Superior Court Judge Joseph P. Donohue setting bail at $1 million and $500,000, respectively.
Two occupants of the SUV and a pedestrian in the area at the time were treated for non life-threatening injuries.
The death of Mr. Valdez remains under joint investigation by the Union County Homicide Task Force and the Plainfield Police Division. Anyone with information about this matter is being urged to contact Union County Prosecutor’s Office Sgt. Kevin Grimmer at 908-447-3777or Detective Janet Lopez at 908-347-8491.
These criminal charges are mere accusations. Each defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.