Plainfield man charged with murder and weapons offenses

A Plainfield man was arrested Monday evening, October 3rd, in a shooting death that took place on September 17, 2022, Union County Prosecutor William A. Daniel and Plainfield Police Director James T. Abney announced today.

Michael Cruz, 20, is charged with first-degree murder and weapons offenses in connection with the shooting of David Michael Buck of Somerset.

On September 17, 2022 at approximately 6:38 p.m., Plainfield Police Officers responded to the area of the 700 Block of Kensington Avenue in Plainfield after reports of gunshots in the area, according to Union County Assistant Prosecutor Julie Peterman, who is prosecuting the case. “Upon their arrival they located a male victim, David Michael Buck of Somerset, who was suffering from gunshot wounds,” Peterman stated. Mr. Buck was transported to an area hospital where he was later pronounced dead.

On October 3, 2022, at approximately 5:30pm, Michael Cruz was taken into custody by members of the US Marshals Fugitive Task Force (USMS) in Philadelphia. Union County Prosecutor’s Office Homicide Task Force Sergeant Scuorzo and Detective Kirsh, along with the rest of their team, coordinated with USMS/Task Force (Philadelphia and Newark Region), Philadelphia Police Department’s Homicide Unit, Union County Sheriff’s Department Crime Scene Unit, and the Union County Police Department Ballistics Team, to execute this arrest. The suspect was thereafter transported to the Philadelphia Police Department where he is awaiting extradition proceedings to return him to New Jersey.

“We appreciate the hard work and collaboration with our local and federal law enforcement agencies who assisted our office in locating and apprehending the suspect,” Prosecutor Daniel said. “We hope that this arrest can bring some small measure of comfort to all those grieving Mr. Buck.”

Anyone with information should contact Union County Prosecutor’s Office Homicide Task Force Sergeant Chris Scuorzo at 908-472-0492, Detective Ryan Kirsh at 908-347-1420 or the Plainfield Police Department Criminal Investigations Bureau at 908-753- 3131.

Convictions on crimes of this nature are punishable by terms of up to life in state prison.

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