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4 arrested on murder charges in New Jersey mall carjacking

By Samantha Henry

Associated Press

LAST UPDATED: 01:32 a.m. HST, Dec 22, 2013

NEWARK, N.J. » Four men have been arrested on charges of murder, conspiracy and other counts in the carjacking death of a man shot in front of his wife outside an upscale mall in northern New Jersey last weekend, authorities said Saturday.

The suspects were identified at a news conference as 29-year-old Hanif Thompson, of Irvington, and 31-year-old Karif Ford, 32-year-old Basim Henry and 33-year-old Kevin Roberts, all of Newark.

They are accused in the Dec. 15 carjacking and killing of Dustin Friedland outside The Mall at Short Hills. The 30-year-old lawyer from Hoboken was shot in the head in the mall parking garage after being confronted by two carjackers, authorities said. The assailants drove off in his silver Range Rover, which was found the next morning in Newark, about 10 miles from Short Hills.

The four face charges of murder, felony murder, carjacking, conspiracy, possession of a weapon and possession of a weapon for unlawful purpose. They were arrested between late Friday and early Saurday. Three of them were taken into custody at their residences in New Jersey, and Henry was arrested by an FBI task force at a hotel in Easton, Pa.

The suspects are being held on $2 million bail each but have not yet been formally arraigned. It wasn't immediately clear if they had attorneys, and their home phone numbers weren't listed.

Acting Essex County Prosecutor Carolyn Murray attributes the swift arrest to "good old-fashioned police work" and leads from the public.

"The sheer senselessness of this case outraged people from Millburn to Newark," Murray said, referring to towns in Essex County, whose borders encompass crime-plagued Newark to the east as well as Millburn, Short Hills and other affluent suburbs to the west.

Murray said the crime appeared to have been motivated by the particular type of vehicle the suspects had been looking for.

The carjacking occurred just as Friedland and his wife, Jamie Schare Friedland, were ending a shopping trip. Mourners at Friedland's funeral Wednesday said he had just opened the door of the SUV for his wife when he was shot. His wife was unharmed.

Friedland had a law degree from Syracuse University and was project manager at his family's heating and air conditioning and heating company.

"We are very grateful to the Essex County Police and all of the local authorities for pursuing this so vigorously," Jamie Schare Friedland said in a statement issued Saturday afternoon.

Investigators believe the four suspects arrived at the mall in a Chevrolet Suburban. Two left together in the Suburban, and two left in the Friedlands' SUV, Murray said. Authorities did not disclose the relationship between the suspects. No weapon was recovered, Murray said.

U.S. Attorney Paul Fishman, who attended today's news conference with local, state and federal authorities, said a multiagency task force set up three years ago to combat "an epidemic of carjacking" in Essex County had helped lead to arrests in the case.

There were 416 carjackings last year in Essex County, a 44 percent increase from 2010.

Nearly 300 carjackings were reported through July 31 of this year, according to the county prosecutor's office.

More than $40,000 was offered for information leading to the arrest of the killers in this case.

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kailua000 wrote:
wait, no "but they are good boy' comments from family? no "racial profiling" in their arrest?
on December 21,2013 | 10:26AM
paniolo wrote:
Enjoy your Christmas in jail.
on December 21,2013 | 10:58AM
joseph007 wrote:
I surmised when first reading about the carjacking and shooting that is must be a black male. Not surprised when I read that it was 4. WHY are they so unnecessarily violent? there was NO NEED to shoot the guy, just point and he would comply. A mother with a stroller and her baby, just shot the baby between the eyes - dead. Why? there was NO NEED for the unnecessary violence. But blacks seem to have no respect for human life. Now, MOST black people DO NOT commit crimes. A very few percent commit most of the violent crimes. 3% of the black population commit 48 % of violent crimes - murder, rape, etc. and usually leave their victims DEAD. Doubt this will be published.
on December 22,2013 | 06:11AM
RetiredWorking wrote:
416 carjackings last year? Now THAT'S scary! How many in Hawaii? Six?
on December 21,2013 | 11:20AM
RetiredWorking wrote:
Correction: I found two hijackings in Hawaii this year.
on December 21,2013 | 11:29AM
I think the key word in his post was "last" year.
on December 21,2013 | 12:18PM
RetiredWorking wrote:
GONE, there were 289 hijackings in 2010, 416 in 2012 and 300 as of July 2013. The key to my post is to compare these stats with two hijackings in Hawaii this year. Any way you put it, the comparison is staggeringly scary.
on December 21,2013 | 01:19PM
honokai wrote:
Similar to the attack at the Westgate mall in Kenya. Serious problem of domestic terrorism in the United States right now. The media does not want to recognize this.
on December 21,2013 | 11:42AM
jwaldrip7 wrote:
glad the vctim was white....otherwise we might have a hate crime here...since murderers are black it is just the usual "random act of violence"
on December 21,2013 | 11:55AM
false wrote:
Rev.Sharpton? Crickets from the race baiters...
on December 21,2013 | 12:45PM
Mana07 wrote:
If Obama had four sons...
on December 21,2013 | 01:10PM
RetiredWorking wrote:
Mano, seriously doubt that. Not even close. How about if you had four sons?
on December 21,2013 | 01:20PM
honokai wrote:
Actually, mana makes a good point. The Commander and Chief of the United States should not inject himself in local law enforcement situations in a public way.
on December 21,2013 | 01:55PM
RetiredWorking wrote:
honokai, I don't see the President's response in this article. I do see an affront presuming that if Obama had four sons, they would turn to be vicious murderers like these scum.
on December 22,2013 | 04:14AM
hikine wrote:
As the father of the victim said he didn't want to hear excuses of why they did what they did, no excuses on how they grew up in the hood and ended up what they were doing. They murdered his son for a car, they didn't have to shoot the guy at point blank range in front of his wife! They all should be hanged, no bleeding heart for these perps.
on December 21,2013 | 03:42PM
laeboy wrote:
Agreed 'hiking'. Actually a little more should be delivered before said hangings. Please get rid of this trash for good they are useless to our society and not needed.
on December 22,2013 | 04:31AM
bumba wrote:
They should be shot and cremated on the spot, ashes flushed down the sewer. Makes the world a better place.
on December 22,2013 | 06:10AM
Carang_da_buggahz wrote:
I've got a relative who's a paramedic in a major West Coast city. Needless to say, he's seen a lot in his 25 years on the job. Even though he can well afford a nice car, he drives a beater going on 250,000 miles. "Sometimes, all driving a nice expensive car does is make you a target," he tells me. Indeed. Vanity may have it's price.
on December 21,2013 | 05:59PM
hikine wrote:
So are you saying the victim was at fault for driving a nice car and people can't drive what they want to drive? Seriously?!
on December 22,2013 | 02:32AM
gary360 wrote:
Who cares if they have an attorney, I sure don't. Same the state some money, take them outside in front of God and Country and do the same to them. As is usual, the suspects have more rights then the victims.
on December 22,2013 | 03:31AM
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