FREEHOLD – The man who was shot by police in Holmdel yesterday has been charged with a number of violent crimes that took place leading up to his arrest, Acting Monmouth County Prosecutor Raymond S. Santiago announced Thursday.
Justin F. Chacon, 33, with addresses in Old Bridge and Brooklyn, is charged with three counts of first-degree Carjacking and single counts of third-degree Motor Vehicle Theft, third-degree Possession of a Weapon for an Unlawful Purpose, and third-degree Resisting Arrest.
An investigation led by members of the MCPO Major Crimes Bureau and the Holmdel Township and Middletown Township police departments has determined the following:
Shortly after 5:45 a.m. on Wednesday, October 26, members of the Holmdel Township Police Department responded to Bayshore Medical Center on a report of a commercial delivery vehicle being stolen out of the hospital parking lot by an adult male later identified as Chacon.
A short while later, members of the Middletown Township Police Department responded to a report of a motor vehicle collision that had taken place in the area of Route 35 and Navesink River Road. There it was discovered that Chacon had crashed the stolen commercial delivery vehicle into the highway’s center median and then stole an SUV from a bystander who had pulled over and attempted to offer assistance.
Then, just before 6:15 a.m. on Wednesday, members of the Holmdel Township Police Department responded to the northbound lanes of Route 35 near the intersection with Centerville Road on a report of a second collision. It was later determined that Chacon had collided with a garbage truck, causing the stolen SUV he was driving to leave the roadway, strike a telephone pole, and burst into flames. After exiting the SUV, while brandishing a pair of wire-cutting pliers, Chacon then attempted to enter a pair of additional vehicles parked on the highway, but was rebuffed by the drivers of each.
The responding officers found Chacon walking in traffic and ordered him to drop the weapon, but he disregarded the order and began advancing in their direction. One of the officers then fired a round from his service weapon, striking Chacon. Following a subsequent prolonged physical struggle with the officers, Chacon was taken into custody. He was subsequently transported to a local hospital, where he remains in stable condition.
The investigation into Chacon’s activities remains ongoing, and anyone with information about them is being asked to contact MCPO Detective Joshua Rios or Detective Ryan Mahony, both reachable at 800-533-7443.
The circumstances behind the officer-involved shooting remain under investigation solely by the MCPO Professional Responsibility Unit, acting in accordance with New Jersey Office of the Attorney General Directive No. 2019-4, titled Ensuring the Independent Investigation of Criminal Cases Involving Police Use of Force or In-Custody Deaths.
This case is assigned to Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutor Matthew Bogner, Director of the Major Crimes Bureau. Information on Chacon’s legal representation was not immediately available.
Convictions on first-degree crimes are commonly punishable by terms of 10 to 20 years in state prison.
Despite these charges, every defendant is presumed innocent, unless and until found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, following a trial at which the defendant has all of the trial rights guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution and State law.