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Police Department

Union Man Arrested on Narcotics and Weapons Charges

A two-month long investigation concluded led to the recovery of an illegal “ghost” gun and the arrest of a Union man on multiple weapons and narcotics distribution charges.

On Thursday, January 18, 2024 Detectives from the Linden Police Department Narcotics Bureau, with assistance from the Union County Prosecutors Office Narcotics Task Force, executed search warrant on the 800 block of Hobson Street in Union.

Luiz Melendez, 53, was arrested outside of the home without incident. Inside the home, Detectives recovered an illegal “ghost” gun, along with an illegal high-capacity magazine, as well as a quantity of suspected cocaine and suspected MDMA. Over $85,000 in cash was also seized from the home.

Melendez is charged with a number of weapons related offenses, including third-degree possession of a “ghost” gun and fourth-degree possession of a high-capacity magazine, as well as with second-degree possession of a weapon while committing a CDS offense and as a certain person not to possess a weapon. Melendez also faces second and third-degree charges related to the possession and distribution of suspected cocaine and MDMA. He was remanded to the Essex County Jail pending a scheduled appearance in Superior Court. 

“Illegal drug sales and the violence that accompanies them have had a devastating effect in our community, and we are incredibly proud of the investigative work that led to this arrest and the seizure of this dangerous weapon,” said Police Chief David Hart. “I want to thank all of our Police Officers, as well as our partners in the Union County Prosecutor’s Office, for their continued efforts to keep illegal drugs and guns off of our streets.”

If you or a loved one is struggling with substance abuse, help is available. Union County Helping Hand 365 offers 24-hour a day assistance, 365 days a year. Please click here for more information. 

These criminal charges are mere accusations. Every Defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.

Winter Storm Warning

A Winter Storm Warning that includes a forecast of snow has been issued for Linden NJ – City Government for Friday, January 19, 2024.

Residents are asked to park vehicles off the roadway when possible, and be mindful of areas where parking is restricted during a snow warning. A Nixle emergency alert will advise residents should it become necessary to remove vehicles from designated roadways. RESIDENTS WHO WILL NOT BE AVAILABLE TO MOVE THEIR VEHICLES ARE ENCOURAGED TO PLAN ACCORDINGLY. Vehicles in violation are subject to fines and may be impounded.

Linden Police Department Ramps Up Security Amid Ongoing Violence in Israel and Gaza Strip

As they have in the past, foreign terrorist organizations have exploited the ongoing violence in Israel, using social media and other communications to call on their supporters to mobilize, protest, and conduct attacks within the United States. Currently, a video is being circulated by a former Hamas organization leader praising the attack on Israel and calling on others to designate Friday, October 13th, as a day of action against Israel and its supports. While this information is disconcerting, it mirrors previously released statements that have historically had minimal impact in New Jersey.

From the beginning of this conflict we have been in regular contact with our law enforcement partners at the County, State, and Federal levels, and at this time, no credible threats have been identified towards Linden, New Jersey, or any of the State’s notable special events or critical infrastructure. We also recognize, however, that tragedies like this can illicit passionate responses and motivate a sympathizer to action.

Out of this abundance of caution, we have taken several precautionary measures to increase security in the area surrounding sensitive locations, and residents can expect an increased Police presence in these areas. The Linden Police Department has also been in regular contact with our local religious leaders to discuss the needs of their congregation and our response to these threats.

A public statement was released on our social media pages earlier this afternoon encouraging all members of our community to remain vigilant and report support suspicious activity immediately. We appreciate your support in emphasizing the important role each of us has in keeping our community safe.

Linden Police Citizen’s Academy

Click here to view and/or download the informational flyer for the Linden Police Citizen’s Academy.

  • Who: Open to city employees, business owners and school faculty within the City of Linden who are over the age of 21.
  • What: The Linden Police Citizen’s Academy will provide informational classroom and hands-on training, with members of the Linden Police Department as instructors. Participants will have the opportunity to become familiar with the day-to-day operations of their police department. Participants will be provided with an overview of the Department’s organization, structure and training.
  • Where: Linden Police Department, which is located at 301 North Wood Avenue
  • When: Wednesdays, from 5:30pm until 9:30pm
    • October 25
    • November 1, 8 and 29
    • December 6 and 13
    • Click here for the class agenda.
  • How: Applications available in-person at the Linden Police Department, which is located at 301 North Wood Avenue. For more information, contact Det/Sgt. Christian Ramirez by email here. Space is limited. Fifteen (15) spots for the Adacemy are available on a first-come, first-servce basis.

Message to the Community from Linden Police Chief Hart

Over the past several days our community has been ravaged by three separate shooting incidents. While these recent incidents have been isolated to one or two areas of our city, this violent crime is a problem for all of us. There have been 14 confirmed shooting incidents to date this year, and while that is down from the highs that we saw just a few years ago, it is still unacceptable in every possible sense.

I want to assure the members of our community that this is our number one priority; nothing that we do is more essential than protecting our community from violent crime. Detectives have been working around the clock to identify those responsible for this senseless violence, and we are working closely with our law enforcement partners at all levels to identify any potential links to criminal activity across the county and state.

People have a right to feel safe and secure in their homes and in their neighborhoods. Recent events have, understandably, had a devastating impact on our sense of security, and we recognize that in addition to stopping these crimes we also have an obligation to restore the feelings of safety that our residents deserve.

In response to these events we have deployed additional personnel, and residents can expect to see saturation patrols in designated areas. In addition, we have deployed a street crimes interdiction unit specifically focused on deterring this kind of violent crime. They will be on our streets every single day for as long as they are needed to reverse these trends.

Union County Crime Stoppers is offering a reward of up to $10,000 for information that results in an indictment and conviction in these shootings. Tips can be submitted anonymously by phone 24-hours a day at 908-654-TIPS (8477) or online.

Despite these steps, and whatever other steps we may take, we cannot solve this problem alone. I urge each and every member of our community to come forward and cooperate with our investigations; if you see something, say something. If something looks off, say something. If you know information about criminal activity, say something. Through partnership, we can stop this trend and restore the community that we want and deserve.

Knopf Street Closure

Thank you all for your patience and cooperation while the parking garage at City Hall undergoes a major renovation.

  • Please be advised that Knopf Street between Wood Avenue and Helen Street has been closed to all non-police department traffic. 
  • This includes the parking lot, as well as the newly established on-street angled parking stalls, with the minor exception of tenant access to the rear of the Church and 401 N. Wood Avenue buildings. 

Thank you in advance for your continued assistance and understanding.

Linden Police Department Third Annual Bike Rodeo!

Join us for the Linden Police Department Third Annual Bike Rodeo!

Click here to view and/or download the informational flyer for this event.

  • Who: Open to the Linden community.
  • What: The Linden Police Department Third Annual Bike Rodeo. Bring your bike and enjoy fun bicycle activities, giveaways, and obstacle courses, while learning the ABC bike check, bike safety education and more!
  • Where: The basketball courts at Dr. Martin Luther King Park (4th Ward Park), which is located at 701 McCandless Street.
  • When: Saturday, June 3, 2023 from 8am until 12pm.

Linden Police Department Youth Police Academy 2023

Click here to view and/or download the flyer for the Linden Police Department Youth Academy.

  • Who: The Linden Police Department Youth Police Academy is available to Linden students graduating 6th, 7th and 8th grades.
  • What: Linden Police Department Youth Academy. As part of the Academy, you’ll learn about the Linden Police Department and other local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies, you’ll receive basic training in police procedures/operations, criminal investigations, drill and ceremony and first aid! You will also benefit from K‐9, SWAT, Bomb Squad and other demonstrations! And most of all, you’ll have a lot of fun!
  • When: July 17 through July 21st, 2023.
  • How: Application deadline is April 7, 2023 at 3pm. Space is limited! Click here to download the application for the Linden Police Department Youth Academy. Applications must be dropped off in-person to the front desk of the Linden Police Department, which is located at 301 North Wood Avenue. Enrollment will be on a first-come, first-serve basis. No late applications will be accepted. With questions, email here.

Safety and Security Training

Mayor Derek Armstead, the City of Linden, the Linden Police Department, and the Greater Linden & Roselle Clergy Coalition invite you to attend a safety and security training: Houses of Worship “Be Ready…Stay Ready.” Training provided by Lieutenant Vinnie Wegrzynek of the Linden Police Department. Masks required.

  • What: Safety and security training. Training provided by Lieutenant Vinnie Wegrzynek of the Linden Police Department.
  • Where: Morning Star Community Christian Center, which is located at 1009 Chandler Avenue.
  • When: Saturday, March 11, 2023 at 10am.
  • How: Masks required. For more information, please call (732) 619-3658.