Security officer shot in the head http://www.privateofficer.com
NTL. ASSOC. PRIVATE OFFICERS
A 31-year-old Newark security officer was shot multiple times as he left work and was found shot to death Friday morning on a 4th Avenue sidewalk, police said.
Julio Cotto, an unarmed security guard who was off-duty at the time of the incident, was shot multiple times in the head and body as he was walking home from work, said Newark police detective Todd McClendon.
Police said Cotto was employed by Gateway Security and was walking home in his uniform from the bus when the incident occurred.
Police found Cotto’s body outside 97 4th Ave. around 12:30 a.m., McClendon said. He was pronounced dead at the scene, he said.
The shooting initially appeared to be an armed robbery attempt because it happened in an area that is not associated with drug activity and because Cotto does not have a criminal background, McClendon said.
After the autopsy showed several gunshot wounds, police said it appears more likely that the victim was targeted.
However, McClendon said they have not drawn any final conclusions and will explore many possibilities during the joint investigation by Newark police and the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office.
Police ask that anyone with information about the incident call the department’s 24 hour “Crime Stoppers” anonymous tip line at (877) 695-8477 .
Armored car employee charged with theft http://www.privateofficer.com
Authorities said they used video surveillance footage from the store to link the Newark man to the theft, and township police arrested him at an Essex County courthouse, where he appeared on a charge that he stole $2,300 from another business while working for the armored car company.
Abrahim Kamara, 38, of Lake Street, Newark, was charged May 16 with the theft from the Wal-Mart on West Main Street in Freehold Township after an exhaustive investigation, Capt. James Lasky said.
The theft occurred on Aug. 25 but went undetected until someone noticed a discrepancy in a bank statement, police said.
The missing money was reported to police Sept. 24, and Detective William Rette began an investigation.
Rette said he checked video surveillance footage from Wal-Mart, where two employees are required to count the cash before it is turned over to the armored car company worker.
The video showed that one bag of cash was not double-counted, and Kamara picked up that bag of money and shoved it underneath other bags, police said.
The Newark man then took all of the money to the armored car, but one bundle of cash was never deposited in Wal-Mart’s bank account, the detective said.
Rette began searching for Kamara, but the Newark man was no longer working for the armored car company, and police could not find him at several addresses in Newark, authorities said.
The Freehold Township detective tracked down the 38-year-old man on May 16, when he appeared in state Superior Court in Essex County on his application to enter the pretrial intervention program.
In that case, Kamara was charged with the theft of $2,300 from a store in Newark, authorities said.
At that court hearing, his application for the pretrial intervention program was revoked, and Freehold Township police took him into custody, authorities said.
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Police candidate killed in fight http://www.privateofficer.com
NEWARK, N.J. Nov. 14, 2007— A 20-year-old Newark police candidate died late Friday of gunshot wounds suffered during a scuffle with a teenager two days earlier at a home in Lyndhurst.
Jose Hall, the son of a Newark police officer, died at Hackensack University Medical Center where he had spent two days in the intensive care unit.
His accused assailant, a 17-year-old Newark boy, was initially charged as a juvenile with attempted murder. Those charges will likely be upgraded to murder on Tuesday, Bergen County Prosecutor John Molinelli said.
Authorities said Hall was at the home on Second Avenue visiting a friend. At some point, he and the 17-year-old, who was dating the daughter of the homeowner, got into an argument. A scuffle ensued and Hall was shot twice at about 12:20 a.m., Molinelli said.
The teen fled but Newark police arrested him later Wednesday at a friend’s home on Cary Street in Orange, Molinelli said. He is being held at the Bergen County Juvenile Detention Center in Paramus.
A gun, believed to be the murder weapon, was recovered during a search of the Orange home, Molinelli said.
Hall, a graduated of Barringer High School in Newark, had considered joining the military or the National Guard but decided to follow in his father’s footsteps, friends said.
Joining the Newark Police Department had been a lifelong ambition for Hall’s father, Jose Sosa, 39, and the experience clearly influenced his son, according to a Dec. 20, 1996, article in The Star-Ledger that quoted father and son during Sosa’s graduation from the Newark Police Academy.
Hall, then 10, beamed with pride as Sosa graduated and described to a reporter the rigors of his father’s police academy experience.
“My dad said they make you run in class and exercise,” he said. “He said they teach him stuff about police, and he showed us the books they gave him, and he even told us stories from the books.”
Hall recently passed the Newark Police Department’s written test and scored well enough to be considered a candidate for the academy but had not yet taken his physical exam and other required tests, police sources said.
The physical exam probably would not have posed any problems for Hall, whom friends described as a physically strong weightlifter.
Hall was well-liked, respectful and always welcome, said Dean Lowenstein, who owns the home where the shooting occurred.
“If he could do anything to help anybody, he would do it,” Lowenstein said.
Hall also was known for his humor.
“He always kept you laughing, he always had stories to tell,” said his friend, Robert Brown, 37, of Newark. “He was a good all-around kid.”
In addition to his father, Hall is survived by two brothers.
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