KPD: Jean closes a bunch of shopliftings

Det. Jordenson Jean, of the Kearny Police Department, has been busy investigating a series of shopliftings and his work has begun to pay off.

For two months, Jean investigated the shopliftings allegedly done by the same person at the Marshalls store. These are the reported dates and net proceeds: March 10, $549.91; March 12, $1,079.80; again on March 12, $744.78; April 3, $419.93; April 23, $389.93; April 26, $809.88; and May 3, $409.91

Surveillance was ultimately conducted and the suspect, Wanda A. Devers Benitez, 42, of Newark, was identified. Jean learned she was also shoplifting at a TJ Maxx in Bayonne and a Marshalls in Jersey City. She was surveilled after one of those shoplifting incidents, too, by another agency.

Ultimately, Det. Jean was able to charge her for the shopliftings she committed and a summons was mailed to her residence with a court date.

Next, Jean recently fielded reports from ShopRite staff about two previous shoplifters. They provided a description and video footage of them. The suspect, Iyanna Hannah, 21, of Newark, (and one other woman) reportedly utilized a baby stroller to conceal merchandise and they’ve been spotted at multiple ShopRites and similar stores, including in Belleville, doing the same.

ShopRite staff believed they knew the identities of the two women, as they had detained them in the past for suspected shopliftings. Det. Jean reviewed and compared security camera footage and found multiple shoplifting incidents done by the same two. They were alleged to have shoplifted on Sept. 4, 13, 20 and 22.

Det. Jean ultimately identified a suspects. When comparing their identities to police records, Det. Jean found other shoplifting incidents, going back as far as 2018. Continuing his investigation, Det. Jean found the shoplifting women actually have ShopRite Price Plus cards that match their identities, which they have used in the past. He also used multiple databases and information repositories to confirm their identities.

Hannah was charged with multiple counts of shoplifting, while charges are pending for her co-conspirators who have been identified.

On Oct. 14 at around 4:15 p.m., Sgt. Jack Grimm and Officers Justine Salinas, Ellesse Ogando and other back-up units responded to an altercation at a residence. When police arrived, two people — a man and woman — were separated. The man had blood on his nose, a scratch and other injuries. Police say they determined, based on the injuries, Nicolette E. Greco, 25, of Lyndhurst, had been the aggressor.

She was arrested, charged with assault and was remanded to the Hudson County Jail.

On Oct. 14, around the same time as the aforementioned incident, Officer Alvaro Goncalves was enforcing double-parked vehicles on Kearny Avenue (cars double park on Kearny Avenue?) when his in-car computer (MDC) indicated a Toyota Corolla’s registration was suspended. He initiated a motor-vehicle stop and was backed up by Officer Pedro Lima.

It was confirmed the driving privileges of the driver, Jada M. Hendy, 25, of Kearny, were of the suspended variety.

She was arrested and the vehicle was impounded, issued summonses for driving while suspended driving an unregistered vehicle, failure to surrender a suspended license and double parking and then she was released from police headquarters, pending court.

On Oct. 15, just before 3 p.m., Officers Ryan Carlos and John Fearon were dispatched a serious crash at the Belleville Pike and Schuyler Avenue. There, police encountered a lot of traffic, and a big mess.

Officers at the scene on arrival noticed an unlicensed passenger of the at-fault vehicle attempt to move the vehicle he was in into the nearby 7-Eleven parking lot.

In this vehicle were two beer bottles and two beer cans. The “driving passenger” reportedly, Orlando Lopez, 53, of Newark, allegedly had bloodshot eyes, slurred speech and reeked of alcohol. Field-sobriety tests were performed and Lopez reportedly performed poorly and was arrested for DWI as the vehicle was impounded.

Meanwhile, police learned, according to witnesses, the actual driver of the at-fault vehicle (which was later commandeered by said passenger) ran away on foot prior to police arrival.

An investigation is being conducted into that.

At KPD HQ, Lopez refused to blow into the AlcoTest machine.

And, after all that and after being charged with drunken driving, refusal to submit to a breath test abd unlicensed and careless driving, Lopez was released on his own recognizance to a responsible party.

On Oct. 17 at quarter to 6 p.m., Officers Ruben Rivera and Olger Montero responded to Walmart, where loss prevention had detained a 16-year-old Kearny juvenile for shoplifting $422.59 worth of merchandise.  The juvenile was taken into custody since this amounts to an indictable (felony) shoplifting, and was later released to a parent. Despite having been the culprit in multiple previous incidents, all of which were handled with a station house adjustment, the recourse for this incident will be — yet another station house adjustment.

On Oct. 18 at 6 p.m., Officer Jose Castillo responded to Belgrove Drive and New Lawn Avenue on a vehicle crash. There, he observed one vehicle positioned such that it appeared to have driven against the flow of traffic (southbound in the northbound lane of Belgrove.)

The Kearny Fire Department arrived and began rendering aid to the involved parties.

Officer Castillo spoke with the driver of the at-fault vehicle, Andrew J. Robertson, 54, of Kearny, and noted he reeked of alcohol and displayed signs of heavy impairment. The individual claimed to have only consumed four beers.

He could not perform sobriety tests; however, based on Officer Castillo’s observations, he was arrested for drunken driving and the vehicle was impounded. While under arrest, he was taken to hospital. Because of Robertson’s physical condition, he could not blow into an Alco Test machine.

A blood draw was conducted at a medical facility to be analyzed for its blood-alcohol content.

Robertson was charged with drunken and reckless driving and later was released on his own recognizance to responsible party, pending court.

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.

Det. Sgt. Michal Gontarczuk | Kearny Police Department