Police & Fire

Grand Jury Finds Clark Cops' Use of Force Justified

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ELIZABETH, NJ - The Union County Grand Jury found the Clark Police Department’s use of force during a traffic stop last summer, after which a grandmother was hospitalized, legally justified, according to a statement released today. 

In the report released by Mark Spivey, director of communications at the Union County Prosecutor's Office, the grand jury concluded, “Following a lengthy review of all relevant evidence including statements from all officers and civilians known to be present at the time of the incident, plus video evidence recorded by a civilian via cell phone the Union County Grand Jury returned a no-bill of indictment, finding that the credible evidence established that Officer 1’s use of non-deadly force was legally justified to complete the arrest.”

The incident under investigation started as a routine traffic stop and ended with Fortunato Riga, age 30, being arrested and charged with obstruction. 

According to the report, Riga’s mother, DiIoria Riga, age 61, refused to stay in the vehicle as directed by police and  instead entered into a physical altercation with the arresting officer. Diloria Riga was brought to the hospital with non life-threatening injuries. She was charged with obstruction and resisting arrest by Clark Police after the incident.

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