Linden Police Blotter: Officer Injured In Scuffle With Suspected Thief

All persons arrested and charged with crimes are presumed innocent until proven guilty.

March 21 at 1:55 p.m. — Members of the Linden Police Department’s Narcotics Unit, assisted by the Roselle Police Narcotics Squad, raided two apartments on the 10 block of E. 19th Street and the 1900 block of Clinton Street after a two month investigation into citizen complaints of drug dealing in the neighborhood.

Officers seized nearly five ounces of marijuana, valued at $2,500, packaged for sale in 20 bags, hashish, and a MDMA pill, also known as ecstasy. Also seized was $840 in cash, which is suspected drug proceeds. Kimberly Franco, 21, of Linden, was arrested and charged with possession and distribution of marijuana over 50 grams; distribution within 1000 feet of  School No.  2 and within 500 feet of  Clinton Street Park;  possession of CDS and possession of drug paraphernalia. She was being held on $10,000 bail  pending a court date. Renrick Kyle Lutchman, 21, also of Linden, was arrested and charged with possession of marijuana and released on a summons.

March 24 at 12:45 a.m. — Linden officers Thomas Zajac and Daniel Kuczynski were working an off-duty security detail at the Dragonfly nightclub, 661 W. Edgar Road, when they were told by a citizen that two men were stealing a tire off a car in the Aviation Plaza parking lot.

The officers approached the two men who stated they were changing a flat tire on a 2004 GMC Envoy. When the officers asked who owned the vehicle, one of the men, Michael Raymond, age 36, of Metuchen, started to run and was pursued by Officer Zajac. Slotwinski, age 26, of South Amboy, remained at the scene and was handcuffed by Officer Kuczynski. Officer Zajac tackled Raymond, who continued to struggle with the officer in an attempt to get away. A backup officer then arrived on the scene and assisted Zajac in handcuffing Raymond. Once at headquarters, Raymond was booked and found to be in possession of 97 glassine folds of suspected heroin, valued at $970.

Raymond was charged with theft, resisting arrest, and possession and distribution of a controlled dangerous substance. He was being held on $50,000 bail. Slotwinski was charged with theft and was being held on $2,500 bail.

Officer Zajac complained of pain to his left shoulder, both hands and knees. He was to see his own physician for treatment.

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