Fugitive wanted for attempted murder arrested in Pennsylvania

Derrick E. Merisma

A Linden man wanted for shooting his stepfather in an apartment unit a little more than two weeks ago has been located and arrested in Pennsylvania, acting Union County Prosecutor Lyndsay V. Ruotolo and Linden Police Chief David Hart jointly announced Monday.

Derrick E. Merisma, 26, is charged with first-degree attempted murder, second-degree aggravated assault, and related weapons charges.

At approximately 8:15 p.m. on Friday, October 18, Linden Police Department patrol units responded to a report of shots being fired at a home on Cedar Avenue to find a 49-year-old male who had sustained a gunshot wound, according to Union County Assistant Prosecutor Nicole Siano, who is prosecuting the case.

A 9mm handgun was recovered at the scene. An investigation initiated by the Linden Police Department, assisted by members of the Prosecutor’s Office, New Jersey State Police Fugitive Unit, and the U.S. Marshals Service, resulted in Merisma being identified as a suspect in the case. He was then tracked and ultimately located by members of the Easton Police Department, who arrested him without incident during a traffic stop in Easton, Pennsylvania, last week.

Merisma remains in custody in Pennsylvania pending extradition to New Jersey, after which a first appearance and detention hearing will be scheduled to take place in Superior Court.

Anyone with information about this matter is still being urged to contact Linden Police Department Detective Maurice Rawlins at 908-474-8480 or Detective Matt Jones at 908-474-8556.

Convictions on first-degree criminal charges are commonly punishable by 10 to 20 years in state prison.  

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