MAPLEWOOD, NJ - A man assaulted a woman Wednesday morning outside of a daycare center at 495 Valley St., according to a press release from Maplewood police. The police reported receiving calls at about 8:45 a.m., and upon arrival, the woman who was the victim told officers that the father of her children, Kareem Dawson, age 30, had assaulted her after she had dropped off her son at the daycare center.
As the woman was leaving the daycare center, Dawson followed her to her vehicle and "tried to push her across the seat and into the passenger side," according to police. As the victim 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.
Dawson then fled the scene in his own vehicle, while the victim entered the daycare center for safety according to police.
After Dawson left the scene, a witness was able to provide registration information and the vehicle was entered as a felony vehicle by the Maplewood Police Department, making it possible to broadcast notification to area agencies in an attempt to find the vehicle and suspect.
Information led detectives to believe the suspect might be in the Iselin area, and after providing this information to the Woodbridge Police Department, officers there were able to locate the suspect and his vehicle at about 11:45 a.m., and take Dawson into custody without incident, according to Maplewood police.
The victim reported only minor injuries and did not require immediate medical attention, according to police.
The Essex County Prosecutors Office has authorized the following charges on Kareem Dawson: Contempt of a Court Order, Simple Assault, and Unlawful Possession of a Weapon, according to an update from Maplewood police.
Dawson, who is from Irvington, will be transferred to the Essex County Detention Center in Newark, according to police.
Editor's note: An earlier version of this story reported that two children, including a child from Maplewood, had been taken without consent by Dawson. However, there was not a child involved in the Maplewood incident.