Bizarre behavior leads to 2 arrests: KPD

KPD Christopher Beltran
Christopher Beltran


Maybe it was the heat. Last week, which saw Kearny sweltering in torrid temperatures, found local cops with their hands full in not one, but two, bizarre incidents.

One involved an out-of-control arrestee who allegedly assaulted KPD officers and created a ruckus at the Hudson County Jail. The second concerned a man dancing atop the median and jumping into traffic on Harrison Ave.

Both eventually ended up at Jersey City Medical Center for “evaluation.”

At 7:30 p.m., Sunday, July 19, Kearny police headquarters “began receiving numerous calls” about a man who had been kicking cars and was now fighting with another individual in the area of Kearny and Midland Aves.

Responding Officers Jose Resua, Jay Ward, Malinda Esposito and Luis Moran arrived on scene to find Christopher Beltran, 25, of Kearny, engaged in fisticuffs with a 28-year-old local man, Chief John Dowie reported.

Police said witnesses agreed that Beltran had assaulted the other man without provocation.

After the officers separated the combatants, Beltran reportedly remained belligerent, had to be forced into a patrol car and forcibly removed from same at HQ. There, he began to fight with and spit at Officers Sean Kelly, Ward and Moran, police said. When Sgt. Dave Rakowski tried to assist them in restraining him, Beltran bit the sergeant on the arm, Dowie said.

The cops employed OC spray, “but the only effect was to enrage him,” the chief noted.

When he was finally brought under control, Beltran was booked on three counts of aggravated assault on a police officer, one count of simple assault, criminal mischief to a vehicle (a civilian car that was assaulted), and resisting arrest.

Bail was set at $100,000, and Officers Derek Hemphill and Jordenson Jean were the lucky cops drawing the assignment to transport him to the county jail. When his restraints were removed at the jail, Beltran reportedly again became combative, and corrections officers had to use OC spray.

Beltran was then taken to the Medical Center under guard by jail personnel.

Varnell Richardson
Varnell Richardson

The second incident was logged at 11:40 a.m., Tuesday, July 21, when units were alerted to a man “perched on, walking on and jumping around on” the center divider of Harrison Ave. near Rt. 280.

Officer Thomas Bannon arrived to find Varnell Richardson, 28, of Jersey City, atop the median, Dowie said. Bannon tried to coax him down, but Richardson reportedly jumped into the road, causing several oncoming vehicles to swerve. He then proceeded to jump over the barrier, from side to side, to avoid the officer, Dowie said.

After Capt. Ed Rygiel and Sgts. Michael Cardella and Joseph Vulcano closed the road to traffic, Richardson was collared and brought to HQ, where he reportedly refused to speak to the police and and began kicking chairs in the booking area.

He eventually was issued a summons for disorderly conduct and taken by Kearny EMS to the Jersey City Medical Center, where he was to be evaluated.

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