An Elizabeth man was charged with first-degree attempted murder for running down and severely injuring a local woman after they had a minor fender-bender and she was attempting to take pictures of his license plate.
Vincent Jean, 56, of Elizabeth, has been charged with first-degree attempted murder, second-degree aggravated assault, third-degree aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, third-degree assault by auto, third-degree leaving the scene of a motor vehicle accident with serious bodily injury, third-degree endangering an injured victim and third-degree possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose.
Shortly after 8:30 Monday morning, Elizabeth Police Officers responded to the area of Salem Avenue and Aberdeen Road on the report of a pedestrian who had been struck by a vehicle, according to Union County Prosecutor William A. Daniel.
Once they arrived, they discovered a 23-year old female lying on the front lawn of a residence on Salem Avenue, suffering from numerous severe injuries.
She was subsequently transported to University Hospital in critical condition.
Witnesses at the scene indicated that the victim and a male suspect, driving a silver Mitsubishi SUV, were involved in a minor car accident in the area.
After the accident, the male driver attempted to flee the scene and the victim, who was standing on the sidewalk, began taking photos of the suspect’s car in order to be able to identify him to the police.
At that point, the suspect drove his car directly at the victim and she began to run onto the lawn to avoid being struck.
The suspect drove onto the lawn and struck the victim, then drove over her before backing up and deliberately running her over a second time. The suspect then fled the area in the SUV.
Later that morning, Elizabeth police patrol officers located Jean sitting alone in the driver’s seat of his parked, damaged SUV on Jefferson Avenue in the city.
He was ultimately charged, taken into custody and remains in the county jail pending a court appearance.
Anyone with further information about this incident is being urged to contact Elizabeth Police Detective Thomas Koczur at 908-358-9675 or Detective Edward Benenati at 908-328-6972.
Convictions of crimes of the first degree are commonly punishable by terms of between 10 and 20 years in state prison. Second degree crimes carry terms of between 5 and 10 years, and those of the third degree, between 3 and 5 years.