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Newark Man Fires Shots Into Air, Flees From Police In Stolen Car, Authorities Say

Rodney Burch
Rodney Burch Photo Credit: Newark Department of Public Safety

A Newark man who police say fired shots into the air and fled from officers in a stolen car was arrested Monday.

Officers spotted Rodney Burch, 28, standing outside a black Nissan Sentra, raising a firearm, and firing multiple rounds into the air just before 3:40 a.m. Monday, according to Newark Public Safety Director Brian A. O’Hara.

When Burch became aware police were on scene, he fled in the car, which had been reported carjacked out of Jersey City, authorities said.

After crashing into a parked vehicle at Summer Avenue and Kearney Avenue, Burch then fled on foot, tossing a handgun into the backyard of a residence in the 100 block of Summer Avenue, police said.

He was apprehended in the area of Kearny Street, near Summer Avenue, where he spit at arresting officers, according to O'Hara.

Police recovered the handgun and found Burch in possession of 34 glassine envelopes of suspected heroin, authorities said.

He faces charges of unlawful possession of a weapon, possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose, discharging a weapon within the city limits, eluding, obstruction of the administration of the law, aggravated assault against a police officer, and possession of CDS.

“I commend the patrol officers for their courage in confronting and apprehending a suspect seen brazenly firing a weapon on our streets,” O’Hara said. 

“Had it not been for their brave and swift actions, this senseless, violent incident could have resulted in tragedy.”

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