Police Capture Somerville Man Wanted for Passaic Shooting

Passaic County Prosecutor Camelia M. Valdes and Passaic Police Chief Luis A. Guzman announce that based upon an investigation by the Passaic Police Department, Joshua A. Villegas, 21-years old, from Somerville, was arrested on January 22nd in relation to a shooting investigation that took place January 17, 2020.

Police say Mr. Villegas is charged with Conspiracy to Commit Aggravated Assault, Second Degree; Aggravated Assault, Second Degree (2 counts); Unlawful Possession of a Handgun, Second Degree (2 counts); and Possession of a Handgun for an Unlawful Purpose, Second Degree (2 counts).

Police say on January 17, at approximately 7:48 p.m. members of the Passaic Police Department responded to the area of Central Avenue Passaic on a report of shots fired. Upon arrival members of the Passaic Police Department located a 21-year-old male Passaic resident in a building on Central Avenue who had sustained a non-fatal gunshot wound.

The victim was immediately transported to Saint Joseph’s Regional Medical Center in Paterson for treatment. Based on the investigation Joshua A. Villegas was identified as one of the individuals involved in the shooting investing and a warrant was issued for his arrest.

Mr. Villegas turned himself in to the Passaic Police Department on January 22.

The sentencing exposure for Mr. Villegas on First Degree Conspiracy to Commit Aggravated Assault is 5-10 years New Jersey State Prison with 85% of the term to be served before parole eligibility pursuant to the No Early Release Act; on each count of Second Degree Aggravated Assault it is 5-10 years New Jersey State Prison with 85% of the term to be served before parole eligibility pursuant to the No Early Release Act; on each count of Second Degree Unlawful Possession of a Handgun it is 5-10 years New Jersey State Prison with a minimum of 42 months before parole eligibility pursuant to the Graves Act; and on each count of Second Degree Possession of a Handgun for an Unlawful Purpose it is 5-10 years New Jersey State Prison with 42 months of parole ineligibility pursuant to the Graves.

The State has filed a motion for pretrial detention that was heard by Judge Donna Gallucio, J.S.C. Judge Gallucio order Mr. Villegas to remain detained on January 28, 2020.

A criminal complaint is merely an accusation. Despite this accusation, defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

The Passaic County Prosecutor’s Office asks anyone with additional information about this incident to contact us on our tips line at 1-877-370-PCPO or contact the Passaic Police Department at 973-365-3900.