Police Blotter

Cedar Grove Police Blotter


On January 17, 2017 at 1:31 p.m., Lt. John Kennedy was assisting another officer on a motor vehicle stop when he observed a motorist using her cell phone while driving. He stopped the vehicle for the violation. The 27-year old operator, Ashley Keenan of Henryville P.A., was subsequently arrested after it was determined that her driving privileges were suspended. Keenan was processed at police headquarters and released with a summons to appear in municipal court.

On January 17, 2017 Detective Sergeant Andrew McPhail and Detective Michael Tower arrested and charged 29-year old Nicholas Demaria of Moonachie. Demaria’s arrest was the result of the detective bureau’s investigation into a string of shoplifting incidents at the Nicholas Markets Foodtown. The detectives were able to identify Demaria after surveillance images of the suspect were shared with other police agencies via an information sharing network. Demaria was already in custody at the Bergen County Jail for a robbery committed in Lodi. Detectives processed him at the jail. Demaria was issued summonses to appear in Cedar Grove Municipal Court.

On January 17, 2017 at 7:49 p.m., Ptl. Raymond Cassella stopped a motor vehicle for an observed equipment violation. The 21-year old operator, Tayvon Hammond of East Orange, was subsequently arrested after an investigation revealed that he was in possession of marijuana. Hammond was processed at police headquarters and released with a summons to appear in municipal court.

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On January 18, 2017 at 08:26 a.m., Ptl. Christopher Heck attempted to stop a motor vehicle after he determined that the operator had a suspended driver’s license. The operator of the vehicle failed to stop and attempted to elude the officer. Officer Heck engaged in a brief pursuit of the vehicle which crashed in the intersection of Little Falls Road and Bowden Road. The 24=year old operator, Najee Brown of Bloomfield, was taken into custody without further incident. He was arrested and transported to police headquarters. It was also determined that he was wanted by Bloomfield Police for eluding charges on January 2, 2017. Mr. Brown was not injured in the crash. He was charged and transported to the Essex County Correctional Facility.

On January 19, 2017 at 8:01 p.m., Officer Christopher Lynch stopped a motor vehicle for an observed violation. The 43-year old operator, Pedro Gutama of Irvington, was subsequently arrested after it was determined that he had an outstanding traffic warrant from Newark City Court. It also determined that Gutama was operating a vehicle without a valid license. Gutama was processed at police headquarters. He posted the required bail and was released with a summons to appear in Cedar Grove Municipal Court. 

On January 20, 2017 at 12:32 p.m., Ptl. Joseph Russomanno responded to a Pompton Avenue business after the owner reported receiving a suspicious phone call from an individual claiming to represent PSE&G. The caller advised the owner that his account was delinquent and his service would be shut off if he did not provide a credit card number for immediate payment. The business owner believed this was a scam and contacted police. Residents are reminded that they should not provide personal information over the telephone. Reputable businesses and utility companies will not call their customers demanding immediate payment.

On January 20, 2017 at 11:30 p.m. A passing motorist alerted Ptl. Joseph Ligas of a vehicle being operated in an erratic manner. He located and stopped the vehicle after observing the erratic operation. The 52-year old operator, Christophe Joel of Orange, was subsequently arrested after an investigation revealed that he was driving while under the influence of an intoxicating liquor or drugs. He was processed at police headquarters and released with a summons to appear in municipal court.

The Cedar Grove Police Department requests that the public report all suspicious activity observed, as it occurs.  The police department telephone number is 973-239-4100 and in case of emergency 9-1-1.  All reports are investigated and all assistance is appreciated.

All persons charged are presumed innocent until proven guilty.

Editor's Note: This article relies on information provided by law enforcement officials and the subjects are presumed innocent. If notified of changes to the charges or their outcome, TAPinto.net will update this report.

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