18-Year-Old Newark Man Charged with Auto Theft
Published on April 08, 2022
Morris County Prosecutor Robert J. Carroll, Chief of Detectives Christoph K. Kimker, Morris County Sheriff James Gannon and Mountain Lakes Police Chief Shawn Bennett announce the arrest of Raymond Branch, 18, of Newark, New Jersey.
On August 15, 2021, the Mountain Lakes Police Department responded to the report of a 2017 black Maserati Ghibli stolen from a residence. During the initial investigation of the stolen vehicle, it was learned that a male also attempted to steal a 2021 Audi Q7 from a nearby residence. The Maserati was recovered in Newark, NJ, later that morning.
Subsequent investigation and information provided by surrounding law enforcement agencies identified Branch as a suspect. Cellular telephone records, provided by Essex County authorities, were analyzed by Mountain Lakes Police and the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office Intelligence Unit. It was learned that Branch used real estate and mapping applications on his cellular phone in the area of the theft in Mt. Lakes on the morning of August 15th.
Members of the Morris County Sheriff’s Crime Scene Investigation (CSI) section forensically processed the Maserati, which resulted in the recovery of a latent fingerprint from the front driver door window interior, matching to Raymond Branch.
As a result of this investigations, Branch was charged by complaint warrant and is currently lodged in the Somerset County Correctional Facility on separate theft charges.
Raymond Branch has been charged with:
- Theft by Unlawful Taking, violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:20-3a, a crime of the third degree.
- Two (2) counts of Conspiracy to Commit Theft, violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:5-2a(1)/2C:20-3a, crimes of the third degree.
This arrest was the result of information sharing, interagency cooperation and excellent police work by the Mountain Lakes Police Department, the Morris County Sheriff’s Office Crime Scene Investigations and the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office Intelligence Unit. Assistant Prosecutor Erin Callahan is representing the State in this prosecution.
A criminal complaint is merely an accusation. Despite these accusations, the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until he has been proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.
Media inquiries concerning this press release should be directed to Public Information Officer Meghan Knab at [email protected] or by phone at 973-829-8159.