LAKEWOOD – A Lakewood man has pled guilty to aggravated assault, eluding and criminal mischief after being involved in a motor vehicle accident.
On September 7, 2019, Lakewood Township Police noticed a car moving at a high speed and swerving in and out of traffic on New Hampshire Avenue northbound. Police said they tried to stop the vehicle, but the driver proceeded to avoid officers which resulted in a crash with multiple vehicles.
When approaching the scene, police found Jorge Juarez Mendoza, 24, climbing out of the passenger-side window. Police also found an unconscious female, later identified as Marcela Alban, strapped into the passenger seat.
The officers identified a strong odor of alcohol, and found Mendoza to be acting erratically. Police suspected that Mendoza had operated the car while under the influence of alcohol. As a result, Mendoza was arrested at the scene and brought to Lakewood Police Headquarters. Ms. Alban was brought to Monmouth Medical Center, Southern Campus, and was treated for her injuries and released.
After further investigation, police learned that Mendoza appeared at Ms. Alban’s residence earlier in the day, forcing her into the vehicle with him by assaulting her and threatening her children. He then continued to hit and strike her while driving recklessly through Lakewood, persistently assaulting her until the motor vehicle crash occurred.
After agreeing to a chemical breath test, Mendoza had a Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) of .14 percent, being over the legal limit of alcohol consumption in the state of New Jersey. Mendoza was charged for driving while intoxicated and was transported to the Ocean County Jail.
Mendoza could face 10 years in New Jersey State Prison in connection with the Aggravated Assault offense and, five years NJSP with regard to the Eluding charge, and three years NJSP as to the Criminal Mischief offense.