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Police & Fire

Standard state review of police shooting of accused drug dealer who rammed Middlesex County detective’s car

Photo Credit: above

BEYOND BERGEN: As is done whenever there is a police-involved shooting in New Jersey, the Attorney General’s Shooting Response Team is reviewing the circumstances of an incident yesterday in which a local officer on loan to the Middlesex County narcotics task force fired at an accused drug dealer carrying 500 bags of heroin who rammed his car into a law enforcement vehicle and struck a detective.

The target, who wasn’t hit, was quickly taken into custody after his car collided with another police vehicle, Acting New Jersey Attorney General John J. Hoffman said.

Identified as Isaiah D. Roberts, 38, of Parlin, he was charged by state authorities with attempted murder, aggravated assault, eluding and a possession count stemming from using the car as a weapon.

Drug charges were being filed by the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office, said Hoffman (at podium in file photo above).

“The officer who was struck by Roberts’ car was treated for minor injuries at Robert Wood Johnson Hospital in New Brunswick and released,” the attorney general said.

Roberts, meanwhile, was being held on $500,000 bail in the Middlesex County Jail.

“Under an Attorney General Directive, the Shooting Response Team, made up of deputy attorneys general, detectives of the Division of Criminal Justice, and detectives of the State Police Major Crime Unit, are dispatched to the scene to handle investigations of shootings involving state troopers or officers employed by county prosecutors as detectives/investigators or members of county task forces,” Hoffman noted in a release issued early this afternoon.

It also says, in part:

“According to the preliminary investigation, at approximately 5:15 p.m. on Thursday, members of the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office Narcotics Task Force were conducting a drug operation involving a planned undercover purchase of heroin outside the Rite Aid Pharmacy at 3553 Washington Road in Sayreville.

“As Roberts drove into the back lot of the pharmacy in his black 2006 Chrysler 300, he observed undercover officers approaching and attempted to turn his car.

“In his effort to flee, he allegedly struck an unmarked police vehicle and a detective from the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office. At that point, an officer from the Perth Amboy Police Department assigned to the Prosecutor’s Office fired a rifle at Roberts.

“Roberts was not struck by the gunfire and continued to flee the lot, striking three additional marked and unmarked police vehicles.

“Roberts’ vehicle was stopped after a collision with a police vehicle, and he was placed under arrest without further incident.”

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