Brothers rescue robbery victim, cops say


Two brothers, both in law enforcement, were credited with thwarting a would-be street robbery in the borough last Wednesday night.

Police Chief Louis Ghione said the episode unfolded at about 10:45 p.m. after a 29-year-old woman exited a bus at the stop at Garden Terrace and Ridge Road and, as she was walking home, noticed that a man was following her.

Ghione said the woman crossed the street a couple of times in an effort to shake her pursuer but the man persisted so she pulled out her cellular phone to call for help.

As soon as she took out the phone, the man grabbed her handbag which was laced around her shoulder, and in doing so, pulled her to the ground, prompting her to scream for help, Ghione said.

Luckily, Anthony Ferrer, an off-duty sheriff’s officer, and Nicholas Ferrer, an off-duty corrections officer, happened to be in the area, heard her and came to her aid, managing to detain the man until officers arrived, the chief said.

The suspect, Michael Fernandez, 34, of Kearny, was charged with robbery, resisting arrest and assault on a police officer. He was additionally charged with two counts of possession of drug paraphernalia after cops allegedly found a hypodermic needle and glassine pipe on him, according to Ghione.

“He’s an admitted heroin user,” the chief said.

As a result of her tussle with the suspect, the woman had bruises to her elbows and scrapes to her knees, he said. Fernandez was taken to the Bergen County Jail, pending court action, after failing to post $25,000 bail.

– Ron Leir 

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