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Garfield Man Who Shot Confessed Car Burglar In Back Charged With Attempted Murder

Omar Smadiya Photo Credit: LinkedIn
Omar Smadiya / INSET: Christoph Manon-Velez Photo Credit: MUGSHOT: Courtesy BERGEN COUNTY PROSECUTOR

UPDATE: A 37-year-old Garfield business owner who shot a car burglar in the back before dawn Tuesday is scheduled for a first court appearance on attempted murder charges Friday in Hackensack.


ORIGINAL STORY: Authorities upgraded charges to attempted murder against a 37-year-old Garfield business owner who shot a car burglar in the back before dawn Tuesday.

Omar Smadiya was carrying a Glock 19 Gen 4 handgun when he found 19-year-old Christoph Manon-Velez going through Toyota Camry car outside his Farnham Avenue home around 3:30 a.m. Tuesday, authorities said.

Manon-Velez ran and Smadiya fired three times, hitting him in the back, records show. The bullet came out his chest.

The fleeing Manon-Velez made it to a McDonald’s several blocks away on Passaic Street, where responders said they found him after being alerted by an employee.

Smadiya, who owns and operates a moving and storage company, was also charged with possession of a weapon for unlawful purposes (meaning: the gun is legal, but the use of it wasn't) and illegal possession of high-capacity magazines.

(He originally was charged with those two counts, plus one of committing what he knew to be a criminal act.)

He remained held Wednesday in the Bergen County Jail.

Manon-Velez, meanwhile, remained under police guard at Hackensack University Medical Center for a gunshot wound that authorities said wasn't life-threatening.

He was in serious but stable condition, they said.

Manon-Velez, who was charged with burglary, confessed to other area vehicle break-ins, authorities said.

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