On Sept. 11 at 3:22 p.m., Officers Harold Azurdia and Sean Podolski and Sgt. Angelo Palagano responded to a family dispute at a private home where they are sometimes called several times a day. This time, an 18-year-old resident complained a package that was intended to be delivered for his 33-year-old brother was intercepted and destroyed by their 31-year-old sister.
The contents of the package were reported to have been a quilt embroidered with the suspect’s newborn nephew’s name, which was now torn, and a doll that had gone missing after delivery.
The intended recipient of the package arrived home and was berated with name-calling by his suspect/sister. In response, he asked for a restraining order and claimed the sister had a handgun in her home (A search warrant was issued as part of the restraining order, but officers could not locate a gun. They did locate a dwelling which was described as “extremely messy, dirty, with a foul odor.” The officers made notification to the Division of Child Protection and Permanency, who arranged a response.).
Officers arrested the sister for criminal mischief. She was lodged in the county jail.
But then, on Sept. 14 at 1 a.m., Officers Tom Collins and Jose Castillo were called back to the home on the original complainant’s report that his sister’s image was captured on home surveillance cameras on the property in violation of their restraining order (This is not to suggest that the cops were given a reprieve between Sept. 11 and 14. To the contrary, the police were called to this home nine times in the intervening days.). The officers brought the victim to the police station to take his statement and found the suspect, his sister, had beaten them there, looking to speak to the police about her own matters.
The officers arrested the sister in the lobby of police headquarters, but of course, it can’t be that simple. She then reported feeling ill and began going in and out of “consciousness.” The sister was charged with contempt of court and was also held on an outstanding arrest warrant for a prior harassment charge. She was brought by EMS to a local hospital to attend to her incarceration sickness.
On Sept. 8 at 8:05 a.m., Officers Angel Martinez and John Donovan were sent to ShopRite where a shoplifting had been reported. A store manager told them Aljamaal F. Lawrence, 38, of East Orange, conducted a transaction at the self-checkout where he paid for some of his merchandise but not all of it. Specifically, the manager alleged Lawrence filled a separate bag with $143.82 of Dove soap products and tried to carry them away without paying.
Officers arrested Lawrence, charging him with shoplifting for diverting the Doves. Lawrence was also wanted by Morris County Prosecutor’s Office (for failure to appear on a shoplifting charge), Union Township (shoplifting) and Elizabeth (shoplifting). Lawrence was then held at the Hudson County Jail, South Kearny.
On Sept. 8 at 7:20 p.m., it was Officers Anthony Oliveira and Tom Collins’s turn at ShopRite, where Det. Michael Andrews had detained a woman initially described as an “uncooperative shoplifter.” A store manager reportedly observed Diana Ramos, 36, of Newark, conceal $72.27 worth of Tide detergent bottles on her person and try to leave the store without paying.
The officers arrested Ramos without further incident on a charge of shoplifting.
She was later held at the county jail.
On Sept. 9 at 9 p.m., police dispatch received a call that a citizen was following a swerving Honda CR-V. Sgt. Tim Castle and Officer Derek Hemphill pulled over the Honda near the Davis Avenue firehouse. The officers found driver Carlos Gonzalez, 58, of Kearny, had a suspended driver’s license and was operating an unregistered vehicle. The vehicle’s owner, Mary C. Brady, 46, of Harrison, who was in the passenger seat, had no insurance for the SUV.
Officer Hemphill observed signs of intoxication in Gonzalez while arresting him for driving with a suspended license. Gonzalez reportedly refused to perform field-sobriety tests, but he was charged with DWI after taking a breath alcohol test at police headquarters. Incident to arrest, the officer found an alprazolam pill and an Ibuprofen 800 mg pill on Gonzalez, allegedly prescribed to someone else.
Gonzalez was charged with DWI, operating with a suspended license and possession of certain prescription drugs not in the appropriate container. He was later released. Brady was charged with allowing a person to operate her vehicle while intoxicated, allowing a suspended licensee to operate her vehicle, uninsured vehicle and unregistered vehicle. She was issued the summonses at the scene.
On Sept. 10 at 12:19 a.m., Officer Cort Montanino came upon a black Mercedes stopped in the intersection of Kearny and Quincy avenues with its headlights off. The officer alighted and spoke to driver, Rita Ferrari, 46, of Delray Beach, Florida, who reportedly displayed signs of intoxication. Officer Montanino later arrested Ferrari when she failed to negotiate a battery of field-sobriety tests.
Ferrari was charged with DWI, refusal to submit to breath testing and a violation of traffic on marked lanes. She was later released.
On Sept. 10 at 1:31 p.m., Officer Kevin Carvalho was summoned to ShopRite where a manager had accused Jaida L. Caban, 23, of Jersey City, of concealing Hanes V-neck T-shirts in her backpack and attempting to leave the store without paying the $47.97 cost.
Caban was charged with shoplifting and later released from police headquarters.
On Sept. 11 at 1:26 a.m., Officers Luis Cazares and Mariana Figueiredo and Sgt. Tim Castle responded to a report of a suspicious car on the 400 block of Elm Street. The officers found a Toyota Corolla with Devon A. Matos, 28, of Kearny, allegedly passed out with a glassine bag of suspected heroin next to him on the passenger seat. Upon officers rousing Matos, he allegedly ate the bag.
Matos was charged with possession of heroin and drug paraphernalia, and tampering with physical evidence. He was released to the care of a local hospital.
Learn more about the writer ...
Kevin A. Canessa Jr. is the editor of and broadcaster at The Observer, a place where he has served on and off since 2006. He is responsible for the editorial content of the newspaper and website, the production of the e-Newspaper, writing several stories per week (including the weekly editorial), conducting live broadcasts on Facebook Live, including a weekly recap of the news — and much more behind the scenes. Between 2006 and 2008, he introduced the newspaper to its first-ever blog — which included podcasts, audio and video. Originally from Jersey City, Kevin lived in Kearny until 2004, lived in Port St. Lucie. Florida, for four years until February 2016 and in March of that year, he moved back to West Hudson to return to The Observer full time. Click Here to send Kevin an email.