Two alleged male Bloods gang members and a female suspect were arraigned today on multiple weapons and drug charges following their arrests on Monday by a law enforcement task force composed of detectives from the Essex County Sheriff’s Office and the Irvington and Bloomfield police departments.
Sheriff Armando Fontoura stated that the investigation began on Friday when the task force staged a plainclothes surveillance operation near the intersection of Grace Street and Clinton Avenue in Irvington in response to numerous complaints of drug trafficking in the area.
“At noon on Friday, our officers observed a suspect, known to us as Angel “Jimmy” Kearney, 26, of East Orange, and a reputed member of the 793 Bloods gang set, loiter on the porch of 19 Grace Street,” Sheriff Fontoura noted. “Within a short period of time, Kearney engaged in brief conversations with two male passersby which culminated with the exchange of cash from the passersby for items that were in Kearney’s pocket.”
The two male passersby were followed from the scene, detained and searched. Both Steven Easterling, 58 of Newark, and Rufus Martin, 57 of Irvington, were found to be in possession of small amounts of heroin-filled glassine envelops, stamped “REDBULL” in red ink.
“Our Bureau of Narcotics detectives along with Irvington and Bloomfield police officers returned to 19 Grace Street on Monday afternoon armed with a search warrant for the first floor apartment,” Fontoura said. “Prior to executing the search warrant, Kearney, Dequan ‘Nutty’ Wiggins, a 28-year-old alleged Bloods gang member from Newark, and apartment’s resident, Martha Inman, 51, were detained.”
The search yielded a fully loaded, 9mm, Glock semi-automatic handgun with an illegal expanded capacity magazine, 63 additional heroin-filled glassine envelops, 46 vials of ‘crack’ cocaine and a variety of drug processing materials.
Kearney and Wiggins were charged with two counts each of possession of a controlled dangerous substance and possession of CDS with intent to distribute. They were also charged with the possession of a weapon while committing a CDS crime, possession of a weapon by a convicted felon, possession of a large capacity magazine, possession of narcotics paraphernalia and conspiracy to violate New Jersey’s narcotics laws.
The same charges were filed against Inman with the exception of possession of a weapon by a convicted felon.
At today’s arraignments, bail was set on Kearney and Wiggins as $200,000 cash bond only. Inman’s bail was set as $100,000 cash bond only.
All three suspects were lodged at the Essex County jail.
Easterling and Martin were issued summonses for possession of CDS and released on their own recognizance.
They will be arraigned at a later date.