TRIO ARRESTED IN SECAUCUS ARMED ROBBERY

At approximately 9:52 P.M. on August 8, 2020, two victims entered the Secaucus Police Department and stated that they were robbed at gunpoint in the backyard of a residence on the 700 block of 3rd Street.  One of the victims suffered a minor head injury during the robbery when he was struck with a handgun.  During the robbery, both victims’ sneakers and several thousand dollars’ worth of jewelry were stolen.

Just after midnight on August 9, 2020,  Secaucus Police Officers who were conducting surveillance in the area of a suspect’s residence on 3rd Street, obeserved James J. Baker exit the residence wearing the same clothing as one of the supsects, along with sneakers that were reported to be stolen by one of the victims.  James J. Baker was found in possession of a handgun in his waistbaind and arrested.  At the time of his arrest, James J. Baker was wearing a necklace belonging to one of the victims. He was also found in possession of a “switchblade” knife, a hatchet, a quantity of suspected marijuana and Alprazolam pills.  A search of another suspect’s residence was conducted on 3rd Street by members of the Secaucus Police Detective and Patrol Divisions and the Anti-Crime Unit.  During the search, jewelry and a pair of sneakers that belonged to the robbery victims were located. Additonally, a quantity of suspected marijuana along with a handgun loaded with “blank” ammunition were seized.  As a result, James Pena and Jacquelin Romero were placed under arrest.   

“I want to thank the Hudson County Regional SWAT Team and Hudson County Sheriff’s Office SWAT Team for their assistance in this investigation,” Chief Dennis Miller said.  “I also want to commend the collaborative effort between the different divisions and units within the Secaucus Police Department, which directly led to these arrests within hours of the initial report.”

James J. Baker, 20 and James Pena, 25, both of Secaucus were each charged with Armed Robbery [2C:15-1a(1)], Possession of a Firearm for an Unlawful Purpose [2C:39-4a(1)], Theft [2C:20-3a], Conspiracy to Commit Armed Robbery [2C:5-2/2C:15-1a(1)], Conspiracy to Commit Theft [2C:5-2/2C:20-3a] and Possession of Marijuana [2C:35-10a(4)].  James J. Baker was additionally charged with two counts of Unlawful Possession of a Weapon [2C:39-5d], Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon [2C:12-1b(2)], Possession of Aprazolam [2C:35-10a(1)], and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia [2C:36-2].  James Pena was additionally charged with Certain Persons Not to Possess a Firearm [2C:39-7b(1)].  Jacquelin Romero, 20, of West New York, was charged with Theft [2C:20-3a], Conspiracy to Commit Armed Robbery [2C:5-2/2C:15-1a(1)], Conspiracy to Commit Theft [2C:5-2/2C:20-3a] and Possession of Marijuana [2C:35-10a(4)]. Baker and Pena were taken to the Hudson County Jail and Romero was released, all pending their appearance in Central Judicial Processing Court. These charges are merely accusations and the defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty.

The investigation is still ongoing.  Anyone with information regarding this Armed Robbery can contact the Secaucus Police Detective Division at (201) 330-2052 or detectivedivsion@secaucus.net, or the Secaucus Police Tip Line at (201) 330-2049 or spdtips@secaucus.net. All calls can be kept confidential.

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