Man killed during an exchange of gunfire with police officers

A man was killed during an exchange of gunfire after he was pursued by two Franklin Township police officers who followed him into New Brunswick and Middlesex County Prosecutor Andrew C. Carey said his office is investigating the fatal shooting.

Diahlo Grant, 27, of the Somerset section of Franklin, was pronounced dead at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in New Brunswick at 3:17 a.m. after he was wounded by police at 1:31 a.m.

Carey’s office is conducting the investigation in accordance with the New Jersey Office of the Attorney General’s use of force guidelines.

Dr. DeForest B. Soaries, Jr., senior pastor of First Baptist Church of Lincoln Gardens, said he was in contact with Carey and Franklin Township Police Chief Larry Roberts and he encouraged people to support the dead man’s family.

“All across America, concerned leaders and citizens have been questioning the interactions between law enforcement officials and black citizens that too often result in the deaths of the black citizens,” said Soaries. “In light of this national concern and on behalf of our local community, I will be speaking with Chief Roberts and Prosecutor Carey today about the tragic shooting that occurred in Franklin Township early this morning. We look forward to hearing all of the facts of this case and pray for the families of the victim and the officers involved. We will also monitor the investigation to ensure that justice prevails for all involved and affected parties.”

Authorities claim the investigation has so far determined that Grant was in the vicinity of Somerset and Home streets when he encountered the two uniformed Franklin police officers.

The officers followed him across the town border on Somerset Street into New Brunswick, where there was an exchange of gunfire. One of the officers began performing cardio-pulmonary resuscitation while awaiting paramedics.

Carey said Grant’s gun was recovered by police.

Warrants previously had been issued for Grant, who was wanted for non-payment of child support in Middlesex County and violation of probation on a drug charge filed in Somerset County.

Details of the shooting are under investigation. Anyone with information is asked to call Detective Joseph Chesseri of the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office at (732) 745-3300.


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