According to the news release, Edward Cagney Matthews, 45, was served with charges of prejudice intimidation and harassment in the fourth degree at Burlington County Jail, where he has been since his July 5 arrest.
The prosecutor’s office said this most recent charge against Mathews was filed after the FBI analyzed the handwriting on a note left in January on a neighbor’s vehicle. Analysis revealed that Mathews had written the note and had rubbed the vehicle.
Granthshala has not been able to reach Mathews’ lawyer.
An investigation following Matthew’s July arrest by the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office and the Mount Laurel Police Department has resulted in 22 charges against him since July 2, including threats of prejudice, harassment, criminal mischief, possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose and chase is involved. According to the prosecutor’s office.
The office said in the news release that the charges are pending submission to a grand jury for possible indictment.
An Independent Investigation Reveals There Are 6 Years of Complaints, Some Racially Accused
According to the report, the office reviewed police reports of at least 40 complaints naming Matthews as a subject from 2016 to 2021, with all victims of his alleged conduct being neighbors who are in the minority.
According to the report, in the 14 months between April 26, 2020 and July 4, 2021, at least 28 complaints were made by residents of Essex Place, who moved to Matthews in 2019. In six incidents in which Matthews allegedly targeted black neighbors, “there was some obvious racial component to them, and in one of them, Matthews self-reported her neighbors by saying the N word, ‘monkey,’ and telling them that They don’t belong in this city,'” the report says.
“Whatever complaints they may have had against the Essex Place HOA (Homeowners Association) board for being unfairly organized, they were protesting, not the other way around,” the report said. “Furthermore, only Black board members were targeting Matthews verbally and by email, and as we now allege, with sabotage of their vehicles. In fact, there was an indication that Matthews intended to serve a minority of the HOA. The members had to drive, not just from their board positions, but out of their homes.”
But after speaking to victims and responding officers and reviewing police reports, the prosecutor’s office found “no signs of bias toward Matthews, and that neither individual MLPD officers, nor the department as a whole, failed to investigate or were dismissing complaints. Raised by their neighbours,” according to the news release.
A statement from the prosecutor’s office said, “However, the report notes that the MLPD typically looks at complaints made by Essex Place residents on a case-by-case basis rather than taking a problem-oriented approach. ” “With a broader perspective on the situation in the community, the MLPD may be able to devise an effective solution and provide relief to residents who were already victimized by Matthews prior to his July 2 arrest.”
“We are shocked and disappointed,” said Marcus Sibley, president of the South Burlington County NAACP chapter. “Our question is, if all these neighbors have said that the police could have done a better job, and now we have 22 charges against this person, how can you tell me they did everything right?”
“It’s hate. Our community is dealing with hate and our police aren’t protecting us from hate,” Sibley said.
The Mount Laurel Police Department did not comment on the report and the resulting response, and deferred Granthshala’s questions to the county prosecutor’s office.
Viral video that led to protests and Mathews was arrested
The video prompted protests on July 5 – the same day a superior court judge approved a warrant for Matthews’ arrest by the MLPD. According to police, hundreds of people gathered around Mathews’ residence to protest his conduct at the time of his arrest.
According to the police, some people indulged in criminal conduct during the protest. On Tuesday, four people were charged with alleged offenses including damage to property, spitting on police and discharging pepperspray on police and Mathew.
Matthews told Granthshala affiliate WPVI before his arrest that he could not “adequately apologize” for his actions. He said that he was intoxicated at the time of the incident.
“There’s nothing I’m going to be able to say that would justify using the words that I used. At this point the community and the world do whatever I need to do to make it happen.” It’s how big a mistake I made,” Mathews told WPVI. “Give me the ability to move forward as we all deserve.”
Credit : www.cnn.com