NEWARK, NJ – Acting Essex County Prosecutor Carolyn A. Murray announced today that an Essex County jury has convicted Ali Muhammad Brown, 30, of Seattle Washington of all counts in connection with an armed robbery of a man in West Orange. Brown, who is currently awaiting trial for the murder of Brendan P. Tevlin in June of 2014, was convicted of all charges related to the robbery.
Following a two-week trial before the Hon. Michael A. Petrolle, Judge of the Superior Court, the jury found Brown guilty of robbery, possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose, unlawful possession of a weapon and unlawful possession of hollow-point bullets.
Assistant Prosecutor Jamel Semper, who tried the case, said on July 10, 2014, at approximately 6 a.m. that Brown emerged from the woods, where he had set up a campsite, and robbed the victim using a 9mm Smith and Wesson handgun. The robbery occurred in the parking lot of an apartment complex on the 200 block of Mt. Pleasant Ave. in West Orange. In addition to pointing a handgun at the victim, Brown also threatened to the shoot the victim before forcing the victim into the trunk of a vehicle.
Brown took the victim’s driver’s license, credit cards, Apple iPhone, computer tablet and other personal items. Over the next few days, Brown used the victim's credit card at several locations in Essex and Union Counties. On July 18, 2014, law enforcement personnel captured Brown at a makeshift campsite in the woods a few hundred yards from the location of the robbery.
“The defendant’s criminality in this case was a clear and present danger to the community,” said Semper. “This outcome was made possible by the extraordinary work of Sgt. Dennis McCole and Officer Raymond Rosania of the West Orange Police Department along with the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office Homicide/Major Crimes Task Force.”
Except for two days during jury selection, Brown refused to leave his cell and participate in his defense.
Sentencing is scheduled for Jan. 20. The state will seek the maximum penalty of 20 years.
A date has not been set for the Tevlin trial.