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Clifton PD: Separate Assaults On Women Lead To Pursuits, Struggles, Arrests

Matthew Johnson, Darius Jackson
Matthew Johnson, Darius Jackson Photo Credit: MUGSHOTS: Courtesy CLIFTON PD

One of two men chased down by Clifton police in separate assaults on women was carrying a knife, 41 folds of heroin and a crack pipe, authorities said.

The incidents occurred within an hour of one another.

Officers responding to a report of a 7 p.m. assault Wednesday at Norwood Avenue and Hazel Street began searching for 28-year-old Matthew Johnson of Clifton, Detective Lt. Robert Bracken said.

When they spotted Johnson on Circle Avenue soon after, he took off, Bracken said.

They chased Johnson into Paterson, where they eventually tackled, subdued and arrested him after a lengthy struggle, the lieutenant said.

Along the route, he said, Johnson tossed away the heroin folds, which were recovered.

Johnson, who already was wanted on an outstanding warrant, was charged with simple assault, resisting arrest, criminal mischief and various drug and weapons offenses.

He was sent to the Passaic County Jail pending a court hearing.

No injuries were reported, Bracken said.

An hour later, concerned citizens alerted officers to another man assaulting a woman in the middle of Parker Avenue, the lieutenant said.

When police tried to stop 21-year-old Darius Jackson of Clifton, he ran, as well, Bracken said.

The pursuit continued through several neighborhood backyards before Nero, a Passaic County’s sheriff’s K-9, helped find Jackson hiding in a backyard on Harrison Place, he said.

Another lengthy struggled followed, after which Jackson was subdued, taken into custody and charged with assault and obstruction.

“When other officers went to check on the victim, she was no longer there,” Bracken said. “It appears that she, too, fled the area.”

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