Fugitive on Tricycle Who Shot Police Officer in Tuckerton has Been Indicted
The man who shot at a police officer in Tuckerton back in November and took off before being arrested has now been indicted.
Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley Billhimer said that Miguel Angel-Villegas, 29, of New Haven, Connecticut, was indicted on charges of Attempted Murder in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:5-1 and N.J.S.A. 2C:11-3a(1); Kidnapping in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:13-1b(1); Unlawful Possession of a Firearm in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:39-5b(1); Possession of a Firearm for an Unlawful Purpose in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:39-4a(1); Being a Certain Person Not to Possess a Weapon in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:39-7b; Burglary in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:18-2; Eluding in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:29-2b; Aggravated Assault in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:12-1b(6); Aggravated Assault in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:12-1b(4); Hindering Apprehension or Prosecution in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:29-3b(4); and Resisting Arrest in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:29-2a(2).
Angel-Villegas is currently lodged in the Ocean County Jail pending Arraignment.
The incident he was indicted for took place on November 21, 2019, when a Tuckerton Borough Police Officer performed a lawful stop on a motor vehicle in which Angel-Villegas was a passenger.
During the course of the stop, the vehicle pulled away at a very high rate of speed and collided with another vehicle, injuring the driver of that vehicle.
Angel-Villegas got out of the vehicle and proceeded to pull out a firearm and begin firing at the officer.
He then fled on foot and was apprehended later the same evening by the United States Marshals Service and members of the New York City Police Department just outside of Penn Station, New York City.
An investigation by Detectives from the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crime Unit revealed that Angel-Villegas had previously threatened to kill his then-girlfriend – the driver of the vehicle -- if she did not drive him from Connecticut to New Jersey.
Detectives also found out that he ordered her to provide the Tuckerton Borough Police Officer with a fictitious name and threatened her with a handgun, forcing her to speed away from the Officer during the motor vehicle stop.
The incident placed schools in the Tuckerton/Parkertown region on lockdown as police canvassed the area and Route 539 remained closed with police vehicles into the evening.
Prosecutor Billhimer credits the work of Chief Trial Attorney Michael Weatherstone and Assistant Prosecutor Victoria Veni who are handling the case on behalf of the State as well as the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crime Unit, United States Marshals Service, New York City Police Department, Tuckerton Borough Police Department, Little Egg Harbor Police Department, New Jersey State Police, New Jersey State Police Regional Operations Intelligence Center, New Jersey State Police Aviation Unit, New Jersey Transit Police, Ocean County Regional SWAT, Ocean County Sheriff’s Office Crime Scene Investigation Unit, Ocean County Sheriff’s Office K-9 Unit, New Haven (Connecticut) Police, Port Authority Police, Tuckerton Fire Department, and Tuckerton Public Works Department for their work and collective assistance leading to the apprehension of Villegas and this Indictment.
Previous reporting from Sergio Bichao was used in this article.