WESTFIELD, NJ — The carjacker shoved a 62-year-old woman to the ground in front of her home, grabbed her keys and sped off in her Lexus SUV in broad daylight, police said.
The Newark man led police on a March 31, 2014, chase into Mountainside before dumping the Lexus just off a Route 22 exit ramp and hopping into a second vehicle waiting for him, authorities said.
Police chased that car until it crashed at Orchard Street and New Providence Road and the two men inside bailed out, authorities said. After a brief foot chase, officers arrested Lamar Randleman, then 28, of Newark, and Cavaan Hinson, then 27, also of Newark.
On Nov. 1, officials presented medals of merit recognizing the actions of Capt. John Ricera, Sgt. Bradford Beirne, the late Detective Eric Lieberman and Officer Nicholas Bagan for their roles in the arrests of Randleman and Hinson, according to police. They were among dozens of department members recognized at the awards ceremony, the first of its type the department has held in six years, police said.
“It was long overdue,” said acting Chief Christopher Battiloro, who has been in the department’s top leadership role since his appointment in August, after the departure of embattled former chief David Wayman. “Our officers deserved recognition for their dedicated service to the town of Westfield.”
Not all awards presented at the Westfield Police Department and Westfield PBA Local 90/90A ceremony were for arrests leading to long prison terms. Some were for medical rescues and others for responses to emotionally disturbed persons.
On Jan. 12, 2017, officers disarmed a suicidal woman who had barricaded herself in her home for three hours, threatening to shoot any officer who came close. Police charged the home around midnight, recovered a .40 caliber handgun and arrested the woman, who was later sent for medical treatment.
The incident drew the department’s emergency services unit to the scene.
Lt. Leonard Lugo, Sgt. John Tango, Detective Nicholas Bruno, Officer William Kleeman, Officer Michael McCarthy and Officer Paul Neri earned medals of merit. Lt. Scott Rodger, Officer Robert Riley, Officer John Swiderski, Officer Eric Popleik, Officer Eric Carrero, Officer Robert Desaito, Officer Ryan Shaughnessy and Officer Eric Loffredo earned certificates of merit.
Staff Writer Jackie Lieberman contributed to this story.
Email Staff Writer Matt Kadosh at email@example.com; Follow him on Twitter: @MattKadosh