Bettering Plainfield with the facts since 2005

Thursday, November 11, 2010

BREAKING: Fatal shooting mid-afternoon Thursday

A 17-year-old was shot in the face shortly before 3 PM at West Front and Clinton.

A truant Plainfield High School student (the Courier identifies him as Spencer Cadogan -- 6:00 PM) was shot in the face shortly before 3:00 PM this afternoon at the corner of West Front Street and Clinton Avenue.

The 17-year-old was transported from the scene by the Plainfield Rescue Squad to the Muhlenberg SED, where he was pronounced dead on arrival.

I am told police are treating the shooting as gang-related.

I happened to be in the area taking photographs at the time and was asked by a police officer if I had seen 'a guy in a  blue jacket'. Plainfield and Union County police responded to the area, blocking off the crime scene and diverting traffic to Myrtle Avenue.

An undercover police vehicle was seen patrolling the paths in Green Brook Park looking for the suspect and three police vehicles were parked along the road near the park's playground.

After being chased away by a female cop who said, 'You don't look like family to me, so you'll have to leave', I learned that police were at the parking lot across from Muhlenberg, interviewing those who showed up at the hospital.

A resident phoned as I am writing this to say that a State Police helicopter is reconnoitering the area.

This is the sixth homicide in 2010.

Spoke with Mark Spivey, who was on his way to the scene. Look for further news on the Courier website later.

-- Dan Damon [follow]

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Anonymous said...

Tragic, Tragic, Tragic.

Anonymous said...

today was veterns day how are you truant?

Anonymous said...

Well it appears coming soon to North Plainfield and Dunellen should be the sub title on West End stories.

Rob said...

such a waste...

Agness McLean said...

Dan, I'm saddened by your use of the word 'truant'. A murder is a murder. It's a sad day for everyone no matter what. Does the notion that he wasn't in school make what happened any less tragic?

Agness McLean

Melinda Allen-Grote said...

What a shame that your article leads with ' a truant' and not just a young man. As a community, when we see that he was 'a truant' he stops being someone's child and becomes just another bad kid. And then we don't have to feel so much outrage. And that gets us off the hook for any responsibility.

It helps to address the slaughter in this community when each life has value.

Dan said...

All -- First, it is a tragedy, and my condolences go out to the family and friends.

Speaking as a sometimes truant student myself, I related what I was told.

Schools were in session yesterday, though it was a holiday. If the young man was not in school, he was truant.

The police investigation, which is ongoing, will no doubt cover the details of what transpired throughout the day, including the circumstances that led to this senseless act.

Meanwhile, as other observers have pointed out, Plainfield has yet to get a grip on this web of violence in which some of our youth are being caught up.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps if he hadn't been "truant," this horrible tragedy would not have happened.

Anonymous said...

Dan if a kid is not in school because school is out then how are they truant. You made a mischaracterization and what both Agness and Melinda said is spot-on.