The intense moment Newark Police apprehended a man wielding a knife and threatening families at a local park’s movie night event was captured on video.
Officers patrolling Elizabeth Avenue were called to Weequahic Park, where they were directed to a man wielding a knife and pry bar and threatening families around 9:45 p.m. Wednesday, Newark Public Safety Director Brian A. O’Hara said in a release.
The officers located the man, later identified as Newark resident Marcelino Canterero, 46, and immediately ordered bystanders to evacuate the area, O’Hara said.
While keeping a safe distance, police called in additional resources, used verbal commands and picked up an orange construction barrel as a personal protection shield in an attempt to get Canterero to drop the weapons, authorities said.
Officers then resorted to using pepper spray to get Canterero to comply with their demands before taking him into custody and charging him with unlawful possession of weapon, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.
“We train our police officers to place the utmost value on the sanctity of life, and to use time and distance as a means of tactically de-escalating potentially fatal encounters,” Director O’Hara said.
“I am extremely pleased that yet again Newark officers rose to the occasion by slowing the situation down and employing less-lethal methods to safely bring this person into custody. Newark continues to challenge conventional thinking about how police handle highly volatile situations.”
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