NEWARK, NJ - Tiffany Wilson, age 28, of Newark was fatally shot on Tuesday in Newark, according to a release from Acting Essex County Prosecutor Robert D. Laurino and Newark Public Safety Director Anthony F. Ambrose.
According to the release, at about 8 a.m. on Tuesday, Newark Police were advised that a shooting had occurred in the 100 block of Scheerer Avenue in Newark. When police arrived on the scene they found a woman, later identified as Wilson, suffering from an apparent gunshot wound. Wilson was transported to University Hospital where she was pronounced dead, stated the release.
In the course of the investigation, police officers attempted to apprehend the suspect, with the pursuit ending in Summit, NJ, when the suspect suffered a non-fatal, self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to the release.
The suspect was identified as Kareem Dawson, age 31, of Irvington, who is currently being treated at an area hospital. Dawson is facing murder charges, stated the release.
According to police, preliminary investigation indicates Wilson and Dawson previously were in a domestic relationship. Dawson was charged in December by the Essex County Prosecutors Office for Contempt of a Court Order, Simple Assault, and Unlawful Possession of a Weapon, after assaulting Wilson outside of a Maplewood daycare center.
Wilson reported at the time that Dawson, the father of her children, had assaulted her after she had dropped off her son at the daycare center on Valley St., followed her to her vehicle and "tried to push her across the seat and into the passenger side," according to Maplewood police.
As Wilson attempted to defend herself, Dawson pulled her from the vehicle and threw her to the ground, stated police. The victim also stated that Dawson was in possession of a handgun at the time of the assault, and witnesses at the scene also reported seeing a handgun, according to police.
Newark Mayor Ras J. Baraka issued a statement about the murder in which he said, "I am deeply moved by what happened this morning and determined to do everything possible to prevent these senseless killings... the suspect was arrested on prior occasions for domestic violence and was released most recently after a domestic violence incident involving a weapon."
Ras also stated that “What happened this morning is a sobering example of why the flaws in bail reform must be fixed. We can’t go on losing lives like this. In the wake of this murder, I am calling for all parties involved in criminal justice in Newark and Essex County: legislators, police, prosecutors, and judges to come together and collaborate to review criminal justice reform. Together, we need to look at the downgrading of charges by prosecutors, especially in cases of domestic violence, and to fix the serious flaws in bail reform.”
The Essex County Prosecutor's Office Homicide/Major Crimes Task Force, which includes detectives from the Newark Police Department, is investigating Wilson's death.
The investigation is active and ongoing, and anyone with information is urged to contact the Essex County Prosecutor's Office Homicide/Major Crimes tips line at 1-877-TIPS-4EC or 1-877-847-7432.
Editor's note: A previous version of this article has been updated to include the statement from Newark Mayor Ras J. Baraka.