Cranford Year in Review: 2012 Police and Crime Stories

Here are the most-read stories that involved local police and crime in 2012.

Jan. 11, 2012 — Arrests Lead Schools to Reconsider Alcohol Policy

The arrest of 47 juveniles during a New Year's Eve party for underage drinking has led school board members to consider reviving the district's drug-and-alcohol policy.

At a Board of Education meeting Monday night, the New Year's Eve bust prompted board member Michael Caulfield to propose a motion to revive ADAPT, the Alcohol/Drug Assistance Program for Teens. The board is expected to vote on the issue during its Jan. 23 meeting.

According to Cranford Police Lt. James Wozniak, at 10 p.m. on New Year's Eve, police were called to a home on Garden Street on a report of a fight taking place in that area. When police arrived, they discovered a "large number of juveniles on the scene. After a brief investigation, it was determined that an underage party was being held with alcohol on the premise," according to the official police report.


Jan 11, 2012 — 

Cranford Police, fire and EMS units responded to Nomahegan Park on Springfield Avenue at about 2:50 p.m. Wednesday to provide medical assistance to a male following an alleged suicide attempt.

According to Cranford Lt. James Wozniak, local police responded to assist Union County Police after the male was discovered with what are believed to be self-inflicted wounds. Wozniak could not disclose the victim's name or the nature of the injuries, only that they were life-threatening. Paramedics and EMS crews responded to treat the patient, quickly determining that he should be transported via NorthStar medivac helicopter to a trauma center.


Jan. 12, 2012 — Police Continue Search for Suspect in Armed Robbery

A male suspect who allegedly robbed a woman at knifepoint at about 7 p.m. on Jan. 11 is still at large, Cranford Police Lt. James Wozniak said.

The Cranford Police Department requested the assistance of the Union County Sheriff's Department K-9 Unit to help them track the suspect. The search was unsuccessful.

The incident occurred in a dark, rear parking lot area near Walnut Avenue and Raritan Road. The woman was reportedly robbed of her wallet by a male suspect. 

The suspect is described as a black male, approximately six feet tall. He was believed to be wearing a jacket and blue jeans.


Feb 17, 2012 — 

Acting on information provided to Lt. James Wozniak by a concerned resident, Cranford Police detectives began an investigation that resulted in the arrest of two men and the seizure of more than 1,000 packages of suspected heroin and more than 100 bags of suspected rock cocaine.

The investigation began in early February when information was obtained that identified two Newark men as being involved in the regular distribution of narcotics in Cranford. The investigation was spearheaded by Detective Ryan Greco and involved undercover surveillance and intelligence gathering operations in Cranford and Newark.


May 14, 2012 — Police Arrest Two Men In Connection With Sexual Assault

In the early morning hours of May 12, the Cranford Police Department responded to a residence on the south side of the township on the report of a sexual assault, police said in a brief press release Monday afternoon.

Taken into custody and charged with first degree aggravated sexual assault were, Marcus Mouzon, 21, of Princeton Road in Linden and Nahjee Faine, 19, of McArthur Court in Linden.


September 6, 2012 — 

Police became aware of the incident on Sept. 2, at 11:26 p.m. when calls were
received reporting a fight in progress on the 400-block of Denman Road. Arriving patrol units observed numerous individuals, including known juveniles, fleeing the area into the backyard of a residence on Denman Road. When police officers followed, they discovered alcoholic beverage containers scattered about the yard and other evidence of alcoholic beverage consumption in and around the residence, according to a press release from the police department.


Sept. 14, 2012 — 

At 6:32 p.m., on Aug. 17, Cranford Police Officer John Rattigan stopped a 1995 Toyota in the area of John Street and North Avenue when he observed the driver not wearing a seatbelt. During the stop, Officer Rattigan detected an odor of burnt marijuana emanating from the interior of the vehicle. Following a brief investigation at the scene, Officer Rattigan arrested and charged the passenger, Ramon Then, 20, of Paterson with possession of less than 50 grams of marijuana and possession of CDs paraphernalia. Then was released with Court proceedings pending.


Oct. 18, 2012 — Police Investigate Possible Child Luring Incident

An 11-year-old juvenile was approached while walking to school at approximately 7:30 a.m. on Thursday morning, according to a statement issued by the Cranford Police Department. The juvenile was walking on Brookside Place near the intersection of Waverly Place when the incident occurred. The juvenile reports that a newer style silver vehicle (make unknown) pulled near the curb and the adult male driver motioned to the juvenile to come to his vehicle.

The suspect, described as a white male in his 30s with light-colored short hair (possibly a crew cut), was wearing a white shirt and sport coat. The unknown suspect never spoke to the juvenile during the incident.


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