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NJ Dad Charged With Attempted Murder Of 2-Year-Old Daughter At Motel

Lamar S. Waller
Lamar S. Waller Photo Credit: Somerset County Prosecutor's Office

A New Jersey dad has been charged with first degree attempted murder after surveillance tapes caught him putting his 2-year-old daughter in a plastic bag and carrying her through a New Jersey motel, authorities said.

North Plainfield police responded to a Route 22 motel on reports of a baby inside of a bag around 12:40 p.m. on Jan. 23, Somerset County Prosecutor Michael H. Robertson said.

There, they found a man later identified as Lamar S. Waller -- the girl's dad -- holding his child, Robertson said alongside Somerset County Prosecutor’s Office Chief of County Detectives John W. Fodor and North Plainfield Chief of Police William Parenti.

First responders tended to the child, who was unresponsive but had a pulse with visible mucus coming from the nose and mouth, as officers began the investigation, Robertson said.

Waller, who is a transient and staying at the motel, was captured on the motel's hallway surveillance tapes carrying the child in a plastic bag then put it in front of another motel room, the prosecutor said.

Some minutes later, Waller got the bag containing his daughter from the hallway and tried to bring it back to his hotel, while being confronted by the child's family members, Robertson said.

Waller went into the room where he was confronted by the girl's mother who was able to save the her by ripping open the plastic bag and initiating CPR, according to the prosecutor.

Simultaneously, witnesses notified police, who immediately responded to the scene.

Waller was arrested at the scene and the girl was taken to a nearby hospital for emergency treatment in critical condition, Robertson said. 

The child is stable and expected to survive. 

The investigation is on-going and no motive has been released by authorities. The New Jersey Division of Child Protection and Permanency were notified and investigating the matter.

Waller was charged with first degree attempted murder and second degree endangering the welfare of a child. He was  lodged at the Somerset County Jail pending a detention hearing.

Prosecutor Robertson, Chief Fodor and Chief Parenti request anyone with information relating to this incident to contact the Somerset County Prosecutors Office Child Abuse Unit at (908) 231-7100 or the North Plainfield Police Department at (908) 769-2937 or via the STOPit app. 

The STOPit app allows citizens to provide anonymous reports including videos and photos. STOPit can be downloaded to your smart phone for free at the Google Play Store or Apple App Store, access code: SOMERSETNJ. Information can also be provided through the Somerset County Crime Stoppers’ Tip Line at 1-888-577-TIPS (8477). 

All anonymous STOPit reports and Crime Stopper tips will be kept confidential.

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