January 16, 2011 by staff
LAKEWOOD NJ, (CP) – Lakewood, NJ – Police signed murder charges Saturday against a man of 19, who they accused of fatally shooting a police officer from New Jersey who led his side and began to ask him questions.
A massive manhunt is underway for Jahmell W. Crockam, who is accused of killing Lakewood Patrolman Christopher Matlosz Friday. Ocean County Prosecutor Marlene Lynch Ford said Crockam is known by the street name “Sav” – “. Savage” for short
A judge of the Superior Court set bail for Crockam 5 million in cash and once he is arrested.
Authorities say the 27 years leading up Matlosz Crockam Crockam that was walking and started talking with him on a non-confrontational when the suspect suddenly stepped back, pulled out a handgun and shot the police on three occasions.
More than 100 local, state, agents of the state and federal completed a house-to house search during the night in the neighborhood where the shooting occurred, at times burst at gunpoint and ordering people to get on the ground.
Ford warned the public that Crockam is considered armed and dangerous.
“We must assume he is armed and he is not inclined to use this fatal lethal weapon if threatened, she said.
A reward for the capture of the suspect is now at $ 117,000.
A massive show of force was exhibited at the Lakewood police headquarters, including a black armored vehicle similar to those used in war zones. Most officers have been flooded in armor, holding automatic weapons, police dogs at their sides.
Even before the shooting of Officer Crockam was wanted on charges of illegal weapons. On 29 December, the prosecutor’s office obtained an arrest warrant against him on charges of illegal possession of a gun and hollow point bullets.
Authorities would not say what type of ammunition was used in the murder of the officer.
A murder weapon has not yet been recovered, Ford said.
A person who answered the phone at home Crockam parents’ Lakewood hung up when a reporter called Saturday afternoon seeking comment.
The officers were struggling with their emotions, mourning for their colleague killed while trying to stay focused on the task of catching the killer. Several officers at police headquarters have worked late into the night, eyes red from crying, even though they coordinated strategy.
“Everyone is still working,” said Capt. Thomas Hayes of the Office of Ocean County Prosecutor. “It’s really intense investigation.”
Lakewood Police Chief Robert Lawson said his officers are in mourning, while doing their work, recognizing the heartbreaking nature of their task.
“It’s terrible,” he said. “We are a law enforcement family. It’s like someone in your family being killed. All officers are felt very deeply. ”
A Facebook tribute page created in honor Matlosz had over 1,000 fans on Saturday afternoon. Some had changed their profile pictures to the crest of the Lakewood Police decorated with a blue and black, and some wore the badge number of Matlosz: 317.
Signs honoring the dead officer had been printed and distributed around the police headquarters. They showed a picture of Matlosz badge with the words “Rest In Peace Christopher Matlosz” and “End Of Rights Watch 01-14-11.”
The staff covered parts of their badges with black bands in the traditional sign of mourning for a fallen comrade.
Matlosz was transferred off the night shift a week ago. He was engaged to marry next year, and his fiancee rushed to hospital where he died less than an hour after being shot.
She and her family Matlosz asked through a spokesman that journalists respect their privacy.
The suspect was described as a black male in his early 20s or late teens, 5-feet-6 or 5-foot-7, squat, sunken eyes, and cheeks swollen. He wore a black hooded sweatshirt and dark jeans slung so low that gray boxers were visible, according to a witness account to the police.
Matlosz was conducting a “routine stop” the suspect, chatting with him for a few minutes, Ford said, leading authorities to believe that both can be read with each other before shooting.
“What was a routine stop, a routine conversation suddenly turned deadly,” she said.
While the suspect fled on foot, a neighbor called 911 just after 16 hours to report an officer down. Matlosz was transported to Jersey Shore University Medical Center, where he died in the trauma unit. His mother and brother survive him.
Copyright © 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.
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