By: Yurtiza Arroyo
A Union County jury has returned a guilty verdict against a man who assaulted and killed a 28-year-old Elizabeth man in July of 2019, Union County officials announced today.
According to officials, Laquan McCall, 31, of Elizabeth, was found guilty Friday on one count each of second-degree manslaughter and second-degree aggravated assault following a two-week trial.
Officials say, the jury deliberated for three days before returning its verdict.
According to Police, shortly after 2 a.m. on the morning of Saturday, July 27, 2019, police patrol units responded to a report of an altercation at Ben’s Bar on the 600 block of Meadow Street and found Oscar Melara, 28, who had sustained severe injuries.
Police say, Melara was transported to Trinitas Regional Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.
Testimony presented during the trial revealed that McCall punched the victim approximately four times outside the bar after an altercation, ultimately causing brain injuries that led to Melara's death.
Sentencing has been scheduled for Friday, January 27, 2023, at which time McCall can face a term of up to ten years in state prison, of which he would be required to serve 85% of that sentence prior to being eligible for parole under the State's No Early Release Act (NERA).