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News Update: Third Man Arrested in 1st Ward Murder

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Swindell.  Photo provided by Paterson police department.
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PATERSON, NJ – City police on Friday arrested a third man in connection with a 1st Ward shooting in September and charged him with murder.

Jermaine Swindell, 26, of Governor Street, was arrested at about 3 pm at a house on the city's Northside, said police. Swindell also has been charged with attempted murder in another 1st Ward shooting in June. In that case, Swindell is accused of shooting in the head a passenger in a vehicle near the corner of N. Main and Stout streets. The person wounded in the head survived.

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Two weeks before the June shooting, Swindell himself had been wounded near the corner of Governor and Carroll streets. 

During the summer, city police had released Swindell's photo in an attempt to track him down. "He's been hiding for months,'' said Capt. Heriberto Rodriguez.

Swindell's bail was set at $1.5 million, Rodriguez said. He is also considered a suspect in other pending cases, according to police.

On Thursday afternoon arrested two Paterson men and charged them with murder in the drive-by shooting of a 21-year-old resident who was attending a 1st Ward block party on September 14.

Police identified the suspects as Knowledge Samuels and Quashon Brooks, both 23. In addition to being accused of killing Dennis Taylor Jr., they also face weapons charges.

Brooks was hanging around the corner of Governor and Carroll streets at about 3 pm on Thursday when he was picked up by detectives and brought in for questioning in the case and was later charged, police said. Samuels was arrested when he showed up for a scheduled meeting with his parole officer.

Authorities said cooperation from Taylor’s family members was pivotal in the investigation into the 1st Ward shooting.

Taylor, a resident of N. 4th Street, had been walking on Arch Street, near Garfield Avenue, when he was gunned down by shots fired from a passing vehicle, police said. Moments later, on Garfield Avenue, two other people were wounded by shots fired from what may have been the same vehicle, authorities said.

Police said the investigation on the Arch Street murder is still ongoing and additional charges and arrests may be made. Police have not disclosed what the motive was behind the shooting.

The city detectives who handled the case were Sgt. David Scialla, Rafael Fermin, Brendan Stapleton, and Roberto Mercado. They worked with Det. Marco Alliano of the Passaic County Prosecutor’s Office.

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