HCPO probing July 4th incident where Union City cop shot man with knife

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The Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office is probing a July 4th incident where a Union City police officer shot a man with a knife.

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

According to a preliminary investigation, at approximately 7:49 p.m., uniformed officers of the Union City Police Department were flagged down in the area of 23rd Street and Bergenline Avenue on reports of a stabbing incident, Suarez said in a statement.

Responding officers located the suspect – later identified as Jesus Suazo, 58, of Union City – nearby. During the encounter, a uniformed officer fired his weapon, striking Suazo. A knife was recovered near Suazo.

He was transported to a local hospital, where he remains in stable condition.

In relation to the initial incident, one male civilian sustained non-fatal injuries, and Suazo has been charged with aggravated assault, possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose, and unlawful possession of a weapon.

HudPost tweeted a video that shows a man aggressively pursuing someone with a knife in front of the Centro Bar, located at 2216 Bergenline Ave, at around 8 p.m.

Sources, who spoke under the condition of anonymity since they were not authorized to speak on the matter, indicated that the officer who fired his service weapon is Lt. Omar Hernandez, a 26-year veteran of the force who is part of the Emergency Services Unit.

He does not have any prior use-of-force incidents, according to the state database.

The HCPO Shooting Response Team and Public Integrity Unit immediately notified the state AG’s office of the use of force by police, pursuant to Attorney General Directive 2019-4.

The HCPO has been designated the independent investigator for this officer involved shooting and is investigating the incident in accordance with guidelines set forth by the NJOAG.

The investigation in this matter, including the use of force by police, remains active and ongoing.

Anyone with information about this incident is asked to contact the HCPO at 201-915-1345 or to leave an anonymous tip on their official website at http://www.hudsoncountyprosecutorsofficenj.org/homicide-tip/.

HCV has filed an Open Public Records Act (OPRA) request seeking the police dashboard and body camera footage from the incident.

This is second incident in North Hudson in the past month where a man was shot by police: Kevin Colindres, 32, was killed by West New York police on June 3rd after he allegedly fired a weapon at law enforcement who were responding to a domestic violence call.


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