DNA helps nab ‘Manor’ suspect

By Karen Zautyk
Observer Correspondent

Photo courtesy KPD Carlos Camacho
Photo courtesy KPD
Carlos Camacho


A series of 2013 burglaries in the Manor section of town has been solved thanks to DNA evidence collected at one of the crime scenes, Kearny Police Chief John Dowie reported.

The suspect, already incarcerated in the Essex County Jail, has a criminal history dating to 1996, Dowie said. The break-ins occurred last summer and were concentrated in the residential area west of Kearny Ave., between Bennett Ave. and the Belleville Turnpike. Kearny police increased their uniformed and plainclothes presence in the neighborhood and were also making vacant-house checks.

“In one of the cases, the detailed crime-scene processing paid off,” the chief said.

Lt. Anthony Gouveia, checking a house whose owners were on vacation, discovered a break-in, advised headquarters and secured the scene. Dets. Ray Lopez and Stephen Podolski responded and collected DNA specimens, which were sent to the N.J. State Police lab for processing.

“We were notified recently that the DNA belonged to a career criminal with an extensive burglary history,” Dowie reported last week.

The suspect was identified as 45-year-old Carlos Camacho, who was found to be a current inhabitant of the Essex County Jail, having been charged in connection with a recent Newark robbery, police said.

Camacho also goes by the name Carlos Camachocruz and reportedly has 10 other aliases. Prior to a cell, his primary residences had been Belleville and Paterson.

Camacho’s criminal history reportedly began in ‘96 with a Paterson robbery charge. Authorities said he has a record of 18 arrests on charges including aggravated sexual assault, burglary, theft, shoplifting, weapons possession, drug possession, criminal mischief and criminal trespass.

In 2003, he was sentenced to five years in state prison after being convicted of a robbery in Belleville, Dowie said.

Kearny has now charged him with burglary and theft.

Learn more about the writer ...