4 kids who stole 2 cars, attempted home break-ins and several other crimes in 2 towns sprung in Belleville before KPD could charge them: Police

Four teenagers who reportedly stole two cars, tried to break into a few Kearny homes, then fled to Belleville when where they committed several other crimes before taking police on a joyride, were sprung from Belleville custody before Kearny could even request their transfer here to be processed, reports say.

It all went down June 16, as the quartet, who police later learned were driving a stolen Kia sedan, stopped in front of a Chestnut Street residence, then attempted to break into two residences on that block, but could not get the front doors open.

They group then stole a red Mazda belonging to a local resident and fled Kearny.

Det. Jean, that same day, initiated an investigation and obtained camera footage, latent prints left at the scene and items that could be utilized for DNA analysis. The Belleville Police Department, meanwhile, advised Det. Jean the same vehicle and suspects were involved in multiple crimes in Belleville.

As multiple agencies coordinated, the actors attempted yet another burglary in Belleville, then initiated a motor vehicle pursuit when the police arrived. The pursuit led into Newark, where the occupants of the stolen Mazda were apprehended by the Belleville PD (Newark PD does not usually pursue vehicles, even when AG guidelines would allow).

The suspects were still wearing the same clothes from the attempted home invasions in Kearny.

Further evidence was discovered inside the stolen Kia and the stolen Mazda.

The suspects were identified as four juveniles, aged 14-16, all from Newark. During processing for the arrest, Det. Jean noted the suspects were jubilant and jested about their driving abilities, evading law enforcement through pursuits and were otherwise unfazed.

Det. Jean then learned these suspects utilized the victim’s bank cards, stolen from the Mazda, to complete hundreds of dollars of transactions.

Belleville PD charged the juveniles with a slew of offenses. On top of this, the Kearny Police Department charged burglary, attempted burglary, conspiracy, theft, receiving stolen property and other charges.

By the time Kearny could prepare the complaints, however, the juveniles were already out of custody. Service will be attempted in the future, or if needed, will be done via certified mail.

On March 17, Officer Travis Witt fielded report of a $6,982.55 fraudulent check being cashed at Anderson Check Cashing on Kearny Avenue. The store provided a detailed description of suspect, the ID he provided with his photo on it and camera footage after they later determined the check was fraudulent.

Det. Frank West investigated and learned the suspect had a specific face tattoo which was used, in part, to identify him. West then contacted a federal officer who is very familiar with the suspect and provided his evidence.

The federal officer identified the suspect as the same.

Det. West issued a warrant for the suspect’s arrest, charging him with forgery, false uttering and theft by deception, all third-degree crimes. Then, on July 13, Officer Mariana Figueredo arrested the suspect, Dajuan Copeland Hundley, 30, of East Orange, and processed him. He was then transported to Hudson County Jail and a Central Judicial Processing court date is scheduled.

On June 19, Officer Jose Castillo dispatched to the Kearny BJ’s store on a shoplifting. There, loss prevention staff said they attempted to detain a woman had shoplifted over $900 in merchandise, but rather than comply, the woman produced a can of pepper spray and threatened the loss prevention staff, who then retreated and called the police.

Officer Castillo was able to determine the suspect’s license plate on scene. Staff provided Castillo with digital evidence of the incident. Det. Anthony Nunez, meanwhile, followed up and obtained a statement from the loss prevention employee who was threatened with the spray.

Officer Nunez learned the vehicle and its owner were persons of interest in other similar incidents in nearby jurisdictions.

Nunez compared camera footage from BJ’s to photos of the registered owner of the vehicle, and noted that they are the same person.

A six-photo lineup was constructed by the NJSP and was conducted by Dets. Jonathan Dowie and Alan Stickno. The loss prevention employee identified the suspect.

Detective Nunez suspect Khadeejah K. Tyler, 29, of Newark, with second-degree robbery and two weapons offenses.

A Hudson County Central Judicial Processing court date is pending; however, the suspect is yet to be apprehended.

On July 16, Sgt. Tim Castle & Officers Latka, Rivera and Ore were dispatched to a residence on a domestic dispute. Upon arrival, they found the arrestee, Jason O. Viana, 32, of Kearny, heavily intoxicated, naked and he was reportedly yelling at his roommate and broke the person’s mirror.

Viana was was arrested on criminal mischief charged and transported to KPD HQ. But, once the police vehicle pulled into the sally port, the prisoner reportedly began to resist officers’ control. Officers say they attempted to escort him from the vehicle to the processing area, but he continued to resist and throw his body violently about and into the officers, who were attempting to keep him upright.

Ultimately, he was escorted and locked into a holding cell, but not before injuring two officers. One officer sustained a wrist injury, the other, a shoulder injury, neither life-threatening.

Viana refused to be processed (digital fingerprinting through Live-Scan system) and was charged with two counts of aggravated assault on a police officer, criminal mischief, and refusal to submit to ID procedures. Afterward, he was transported to the Hudson County Jail in South Kearny.

Back in April, Sgt. Sean Kelly pulled over a woman after she drove over 100 feet against the flow of traffic, after having circumvented a long line of traffic cones, in order to avoid a road closure associated with the Passaic Avenue carnival.

Loretta D. Williams Watson, 46, of Newark was issued summonses for careless driving and driving with a suspended DL. She also had two outstanding warrants from Maplewood and Newark, both having been issued after she failed to appear in court. She was arrested then, but those jurisdictions released her on her own recognizance (ROR).

The on July 15, officers from Newark’s Fifth Precinct arrested the same woman who had an outstanding Kearny warrant ($1,000) and transferred custody of her to Officer Jordan Anders, of the KPD. (Williams Watson, meanwhile,  didn’t show up to court for summonses issued by Sgt. Kelly.)

The same Maplewood and Newark warrants were once again outstanding as she did not show up to her rescheduled court dates.

She was released again, with new court dates.

On July 16 at around 7 a.m., Officer Nicole Cain was patrolling Passaic Avenue when she observed a silver Toyota driving in the opposite lane of travel, against the flow of traffic. The same vehicle also repeatedly crossed over the double yellow lines.

Officer Cain activated her overhead lights while nearing Riverview Court, but the vehicle did not pull over until near Bergen Avenue. Officer Cain says she observed many signs of impairment, including alcohol on the driver’s breath, visible swaying when standing, bloodshot watery eyes, drooping eyelids, etc.

Officer Sean Podolski arrived as back-up and conducted standardized field sobriety tests.

The subject, Ricardo Flores, 29, of Kearny, reportedly didn’t do too well on those test and was arrested.

Modelo beer cans were found inside of the vehicle, which was impounded.

At KPD HQ, Officer Cain administered a chemical breath test which registered a blood alcohol content of roughly double the legal limit.

Flores was summonsed with reckless driving, traffic on marked lanes and driving while intoxicated.

He was then released to a responsible party, with a court date scheduled in Kearny Municipal Court.

On July 16 at around 1:30 p.m., KPD units were dispatched to Walmart on a report of one party threatening another with a weapon. Officers Ryan Stickno and Jordan Anders responded and spoke to involved parties and witnesses.

Loss prevention found a large knife and said one of the parties ditched it on a shelf after the incident.

The victim said incident began in Newark earlier, and she was later threatened with this knife in the Walmart by the same suspect. Ryan D. St. Louis, 32, of Newark, was arrested and taken to KPD HQ, where he was charged with making terrorist threats, possession of a weapon for unlawful purposes, and unlawful possession of a weapon.

St. Louis was remanded to the County.

On July 17, Officers San Martin and Castillo responded to a report of a shoplifter fleeing the Dollar Tree on Passaic Avenue. Det. Sgt. Michael Gonzalez, who was in the area, also responded. Loss prevention staff provided a detailed description of the shoplifter, who supposedly fled shortly prior to police arrival (on a bicycle.)

Officer San Martin later noticed an individual he is familiar with, matching the description, riding a black and pink Huffy bike. San Martin says he knew the individual to be a habitual shoplifter, who fences the goods in Newark.

San Martin detained the man and loss prevention staff identified him as the shoplifter — 40-year-old Elias Rodriguez, 40, of the Bronx. After he was arrested, a search yielded items from allegedly stolen Dollar Tree, as well as from the BJs and Marshalls stores.

Rodriguez was taken to HQ and charged with three counts of shoplifting.  Additionally, a $1,000 Kearny warrant was outstanding, as well as a $6,000 Bloomfield warrant — and he was a wanted person in NCIC via the Essex County Sheriff’s Office, which included three separate complaint numbers.

Rodriguez was remanded to the Hudson County Jail.

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Det. Sgt. Michal Gontarczuk | Kearny Police Department

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.