Law & Justice

Man Indicted for Easter Sunday Murder of Elizabeth Woman

Union County Courthouse Credits: Fran Sullivan

ELIZABETH, NJ – An Elizabeth resident has been indicted for the murder of a 26-year-old women on Easter Sunday, March 27,  acting Union County Prosecutor Grace H. Park announced Monday, August 22.

Arturo Alomas, 33, who fled the state after the murder,  is charged with first-degree murder in the death of Trenice Johnson.  An autopsy revealed that the cause of Johnson’s death was a combination of strangulation and asphyxiation, said Union County Assistant Prosecutor Albert Cernadas, Jr., who is prosecuting the case.

A joint investigation involving the Prosecutor’s Office’s Homicide Task Force, the Elizabeth Police Department, the Union County Sheriff’s Office Identification Unit, the North Carolina State Highway Patrol, and the Rowan County (North Carolina) Sheriff's Office Criminal Investigation Division resulted in Alomas being identified as a suspect in the case. He was arrested later on the day of the homicide and charged with multiple offenses after allegedly attempting to elude police in North Carolina following an attempted traffic stop.

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Alomas is currently lodged in Union County Jail, with bail set at $1 million by state Superior Court Judge Joseph P. Donohue.

Convictions on first-degree murder charges are commonly punishable by 30 years to life in state prison. 

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

Plainfield man sentenced to 25 years for fatal shooting

In another announcement from the prosecutor’s office, a Plainfield resident has been sentenced to 25 years in state prison for his role in the fatal shooting of a deli owner during the course of a robbery a little more than five years ago, acting Union County Prosecutor Grace H. Park also announced Monday, August 22.

Shalik Coleman, 23, must serve at least 85 percent of that sentence before the possibility of parole under New Jersey’s No Early Release Act, according to the terms set down by state Superior Court Judge Frederic McDaniel.

The crime took place  a little after 4 p.m. on July 2, 2011, when a man later identified as Coleman and two other suspects, all wearing masks, entered Leaty Deli on the 800 block of East Sixth Street in Plainfield, according to Union County Assistant Prosecutor Scott M. Peterson, who prosecuted the case.

An attempted robbery went awry, and Leaty was fatally shot, Peterson said. An investigation by the Union County Homicide Task Force, Union County Sheriff’s Office, and Plainfield Police Division quickly resulted in Coleman being identified as a suspect in the case, and he was arrested two days later, lodged in Union County Jail on $1 million bail.

Coleman pleaded guilty in May 2016. The other two suspects involved in the robbery remain at large, and anyone with information about their identities or whereabouts is being urged to contact the Homicide Task Force at 908-527-4500.


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