A Union County grand jury has returned a three-count indictment against a local man accused of assaulting a livery driver in the parking lot of an Elizabeth coffee shop earlier this year, causing injuries that ultimately resulted in his death, acting Union County Prosecutor Thomas K. Isenhour announced Monday.
Emmanuel John, 32, of Elizabeth is charged with first-degree murder, second-degree endangering the welfare of a child, and third-degree leaving the scene of a fatal accident.
At approximately 4 p.m. on Thursday, June 15, 2017, Elizabeth Police Department patrol units responded to the Dunkin’ Donuts on U.S. Routes 1&9 near Woodruff Lane to find 45-year-old Imran Masood of the Avenel section of Woodbridge unconscious and suffering from multiple injuries, according to Union County Assistant Prosecutor Armando Suarez, who is prosecuting the case. Masood was transported to University Hospital in Newark for treatment but never regained consciousness, Suarez said; he was pronounced dead at approximately 7:15 p.m. on Thursday, August 3, 2017.
An investigation by the Elizabeth Police Department revealed that an argument between the defendant and victim quickly escalated to violence, with John allegedly striking the victim multiple times through his open car window and then also slamming Masood’s vehicle’s door into him several times. After being assaulted, Masood positioned himself behind John’s car to take a photo with his cell phone camera, but at that time, John allegedly quickly put the car into reverse, striking the victim and throwing him to the ground before speeding away from the scene.
John was arrested several days later and lodged in Union County Jail. The endangering charge was filed because a 16-month-old child was in the back seat of John’s vehicle while the alleged assault took place.
Anyone with information about this matter still is being urged to contact Union County Homicide Task Force Sgt. Jose Vendas at 908-358-3048 or Detective Danika Ramos at 908-451-7739.
Convictions on murder charges are commonly punishable by terms of 30 years to life in state prison.
These charges are mere accusations. Each defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.