Three arrests in stabbing Boy, 16, hospitalized; police say it’s gang-related

An altercation and subsequent stabbing of a 16-year-old Ridgefield Park teen last Friday night outside a Bergenline Avenue convenience store in North Bergen has led to the arrests of three young men, two of whom are juveniles, on aggravated assault charges.

North Bergen Det. Joseph Jener said that the altercation is suspected to be gang-related and stems from a previous incident between Eric Sanchez, the 21-year-old West New York man arrested in the altercation, and the wounded teen.

“From what we were able to gather, we believe it stems from a prior incident last April, a street fight in West New York where Mr. Sanchez was injured,” Jener said. “We surmise that this was some sort of retaliation, because there were conversations online and on cell phones between the two.”

Apparently, the Ridgefield Park teen, whose name cannot be revealed because of his age, was spotted at the Quick Chek on Bergenline Avenue around 10:30 p.m. last Friday night.

“Subsequently, a phone call was made and they all agreed to meet at the Quick Chek,” Jener said.

Sanchez arrived with two other teenagers, both from North Bergen, ages 17 and 15. A physical confrontation broke out. After the 16-year-old Ridgefield Park teenager was allegedly hit over the head with a pipe, Sanchez allegedly stabbed the teen once in the abdomen and then allegedly fled the scene with the other two North Bergen juveniles, police said.

The teen was transported to the Jersey City Medical Center, where he received treatment for the wound. His condition was not immediately known, but Jener said that the wound was not life-threatening.


The North Bergen police investigation, spearheaded by officers Mark Francin and Enrique Marrero, tracked down the information.

“After the investigation, the officers had a tentative identification of everyone involved,” Jener said. “They then narrowed it down and made the arrests.”

Police charged Sanchez, who is a student at Rutgers-Newark, with aggravated assault, possession of weapon for unlawful purposes and unlawful possession of a weapon.

He was sent to Central Judicial Processing in Hudson County Superior Court, arraigned, and then sent to Hudson County Jail, with bail set at $10,000.

The two juveniles from North Bergen were also hit with aggravated assault and weapons charges. They were remanded to the Hudson County Youth House in Secaucus.

Jener said that he credited the help of local police investigators, like the West New York police department, for their assistance in getting arrests made so quickly after the incident.

“They knew there was a prior incident, and through the investigation and the cooperation of the other agencies, we were able to make the arrests necessary,” Jener said.

The two North Bergen juveniles were brought into custody two days after the incident, while Sanchez was picked up at school in Newark on Monday, three days after the stabbing.

All of the people involved are of Hispanic descent and are believed to be involved in gang-related activities.


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