Swift action saved lives

Tajajuan Womack, an 11-year-old boy, was honored at the May 14 City Council meeting for his quick response to the smell of smoke, waking his family at 3:43 a.m. on April 7 so that they could all escape a fire at their Arlington Avenue home.
“He reacted quickly, bravely, and calmly as he woke his family, so that they all escaped the house safely,” the resolution said.
Wanda Womack, the owner of the home, and other members of his family were on hand to pay tribute to the boy.
Tajajuan, a student at Public School No. 41, slept on the second floor of the house and saw heavy smoke when he awoke. He ran to his mother’s bedroom and banged on the door.
He told her that there was a fire in the house. They then woke other family members including two of his four brothers and sisters, his aunt, and his aunt’s boyfriend, and fled the house.
The fire apparently started in the basement and spread through the house. Wanda Womack is an employee of the Jersey City Board of Education.

Fire death on Mallory may be ruled as murder

A fatal fire on Mallory Avenue is being investigated by the Hudson County Prosecutor’s office, city officials said. The fire, which occurred the evening of May 22, is being investigated as arson. If ruled an arson, the death would be considered murder. Watch for more details.

Man charged with attempted murder after officers hang on to his vehicle

Jersey City police officers attempted to stop a motor vehicle near Kearney and Bergen Avenues on May 20 at about 12:45 p.m. The vehicle was being driven by John Windley, 34, of Jersey City.
According to a statement issued by the Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office, the officers observed a handgun allegedly in Windley’s possession and attempted to arrest Windley when he allegedly accelerated with both officers hanging onto the moving vehicle. At that point, both officers discharged their weapons. No one was struck by the gunfire.
One of the officers fell from the moving vehicle, as the other entered the vehicle through the sunroof and struggled with Windley before the vehicle stopped at the intersection of Bergen and Boyd Avenues. Windley then fled the vehicle, allegedly discarding his semi-automatic handgun and ammunition along the route. He was quickly apprehended and arrested by Jersey City Police and the firearm was recovered. Windley was charged with Attempted Murder, Eluding, Resisting Arrest, and other firearms offenses.

Memorial Day ceremony Monday at The Historic Harsimus Cemetery

On May 26 at 1 p.m. a musical salute to fallen military will be held at the Harsimus Cemetery 435 Newark Ave. in Jersey City. The event is free, but donations are being sought to help raise money to replace the gatekeeper house where veterans live.

Primary fight is on for Jersey City freeholder

Freeholder Jeff Dublin is being challenged by Gerard Balmir Jr. in a primary fight for the 3rd Freeholder District, which is largely comprised of Ward F and part of Ward A in Jersey City. Balmir is supported by Mayor Steven Fulop as well as the Hudson County Democratic Organization (HCDO). Dublin fell out of political favor when he supported Mayor Jerramiah Healy in the election Fulop won last year.
Traditionally, the mayor of the town gets to pick a candidate for freeholder, and this candidate is supported by the HCDO.
Dublin has served on the freeholder board since 2004. He is deputy director of the Jersey City Incinerator Authority and formerly served as chairman of the Jersey City Democratic Organization.
Balmir, a labor leader, served as a staff member for then Gov. Jim McGreevey, and currently serves a government and community affairs representative for Laborers’ International Union of North America. He was recently appointed to the Jersey City Municipal Authority Board.
The primary will be held Tuesday, June 3. The winner may face a Republican in November.

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