Oct. 21, 2015
Newark Man Sentenced to Seven Years for Resisting Arrest
Defendant was sentenced under persistent offender law
Newark – Acting Essex County Prosecutor Carolyn A. Murray announced today that the Honorable Alfonse J. Cifelli, Judge of the Superior, has sentenced Larry C. James, 41, of Newark to seven years in New Jersey state prison for resisting arrest. James must serve 3 ½ years before he is eligible for parole.
James was arrested on Sept. 28, 2013 after getting involved in a motor vehicle collision at the intersection of Central Avenue and Hickory Street in Orange. Three Orange Police officers on patrol heard the crash and responded to the scene.
James was the driver of one vehicle. The other was a car visiting from Maryland. Both cars sustained serious damage making them inoperable. Consequently, the officers called for a tow truck to remove both vehicles from the scene.
James and his girlfriend were initially permitted to retrieve items from the vehicle prior to it being towed. Then, as the tow trucks were about to tow James’ vehicle, he continued to approach the vehicle. Officers advised James to back away from the vehicle for his safety, but he refused. Two of the officers testified during the trial that James ignored their commands and ultimately pushed them. Officers advised James that he was being placed under arrest, and they attempted to arrest him. The testimony at trial revealed that he continued to physically resist arrest, pushing the officers and flailing his arms. It took all three officers to finally subdue James and place him under arrest.
Placed in the back of a police car, James was transported to the Orange Police Station. After exiting the police vehicle, one of the officers discovered a prescription bottle in the back seat bearing Mr. James’ name and address. Upon further examination, the bottle was found to contain 65 tiny baggies of crack cocaine and 10 envelopes of heroin.
On Aug. 17, of this year a jury rendered a partial verdict, finding James guilty of resisting arrest but not guilty of three counts of aggravated assault on a law enforcement officer. The jury was hung on the drug charges. The drug offenses were subsequently resolved by way of plea. On Aug. 31, James pled guilty to possession of heroin and possession of cocaine with a plea recommendation of three years in New Jersey State Prison which would run concurrent to any sentence imposed on the resisting arrest charge.
James, who has an extensive record, was sentenced as a “persistent offender,” according to Assistant Prosecutor, Marissa Kawecki, who handled the case. Under New Jersey law he faced a tougher sentence because he had five prior felony convictions.
“We believe this sentence is appropriate and necessary to protect the public given this defendant’s long history of violating the law,’’ said Kawecki.