Possible Death Penalty For Carjacking Suspects? - My9 New Jersey

Possible Death Penalty For Carjacking Suspects?

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Last week, arrests were made in the tragic shooting of Dustin Friedland at the Short Hills Mall in what was a carjacking gone terribly wrong. Now the four men responsible for this horrific event are in custody and some are even talking about possible capital punishment.

Early in the week Basim Henry faced a judge at federal court in Newark where there was a hearing for him regarding two outstanding warrants. One of them had to do with violation of supervised release from when he was on probation for a 2006 bank robbery. He violated his probation by leaving New Jersey and going to Pennsylvania which is where authorities were able to find and arrest him for the carjacking and murder of Friedland using a GPS tracking device.

The other men arrested for this heinous crime are: Kevin Roberts, Karif Ford and Hanif Thompson. These men will all be arraigned on Wednesday, January 8, 2014 at 9:00am.

People are extremely outraged over this tragedy and many of them are now calling for the possible death penalty for these four men. However, in 2007 the death penalty was banned in the Garden State so that may not be an option unless this case is moved to a federal court.

Municipal Prosecutor and Criminal Attorney, Richard DeMichel, chimed in on this case.

“The federal jurisdiction is concurrent with the state jurisdiction and what that means is they can be charged with state crimes in addition to federal crime. Any conviction of a federal crime would carry with it a penalty under the federal guidelines; in this case a felony carjacking could be subject to the death penalty,” he said.

DeMichel said that the fact that this case has gained national attention makes it a lot more likely that these men will be punished to the fullest extent of the law.

“What is more the driver is the amount of attention this case had gotten and the U.S Attorney’s willingness and desire to get involved in this case may be driven in part by the media that’s surrounding it,” he said.

He went on to discuss what is next up for these men.

“As a lawyer who does criminal defense I think it’s kind of unique that we’re in a situation where a lot of people are talking about crime and significant crime and I think that where this happened in a very suburban area makes people feel that a murder can occur while they’re shopping,” he said.


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