Arrests Made in Connection with Morristown Sexual Assault on Traction Line Recreation Trail

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MORRIS COUNTY — Morris County Prosecutor Robert J. Carroll, Chief of Detectives Christoph K. Kimker, Morris County Sheriff James Gannon, Morristown Police Chief Darnell Richardson, and Morris Township Police Chief Mark DiCarlo announced that two men have been arrested and charged in connection with an alleged sexual assault that occurred the afternoon of Tuesday, May 3, in Morristown.

On May 3, 2022, at approximately 3:41 p.m., two males approached a female and asked for money on the Traction Line Recreation Trail.

When the female victim did not provide money, one of the males pushed the victim to the ground and sexually assaulted her while the other male stood nearby.

It is alleged that the male who pushed the victim to the ground was armed with a rock at the time he sexually assaulted her.

Thereafter, both suspects fled the area.

Both suspects were unknown to the victim. On May 6, a 17-year-old juvenile male and an adult, Lizandro Osorio-Mejia, 18, were arrested in connection with the sexual assault.

It should be noted that these arrests were effectuated within hours of the public release of identifying information by the authorities.

The juvenile was charged with one count of Robbery, in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:15-1a(2) (as an accomplice), a crime of the First Degree; one count of Conspiracy to Commit Robbery, in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:15-1a(2) and N.J.S.A. 2C:5-2a(2), a crime of the Second Degree; and Theft, in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:20-3a, a crime of the Fourth Degree. The juvenile will not be identified by name.

Osorio-Mejia was arrested and charged with:

    • Two counts of Aggravated Sexual Assault, in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:14-2a(3) and N.J.S.A. 2C:14-2a(4), crimes of the First Degree.
    • One count of Sexual Assault, in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:14-2c(1), a crime of the Second Degree.
    • Two counts of Aggravated Criminal Sexual Contact, in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:14-3a, crimes of the Third Degree.
    • One count of Criminal Sexual Contact, in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:14-3b, a crime of the Fourth Degree.
    • One count of Robbery, in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:15-1a(2), a crime of the First Degree.
    • One count of Conspiracy to Commit Robbery in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:15-1a(2) and N.J.S.A. 2C:5-2a(2), a crime of the Second Degree.
    • One count of Unlawful Possession of a Weapon, in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:39-5d, a crime of the Fourth Degree.
    • One count of Possession of a Weapon for an Unlawful Purpose, in violation of
      N.J.S.A. 2C:39-4d, a crime of the Third Degree.
    • One count of Terroristic Threats in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:12-3b, a crime of the Third Degree.
    • One count of Aggravated Assault in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:12-1b(7), a crime of the Third Degree.
    • One count of Theft in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:20-2a, a crime of the Fourth Degree.

Prosecutor Carroll commended CrimeStoppers for quickly offering a reward for information and the New Jersey State Police for composing the sketch.

Prosecutor Carroll said, “Thank you to all our law enforcement partners at the state, county, and local levels, without whom such a thorough and swift investigation and arrests would not have been possible. I also thank the public and our local/regional media for their vigilance and for helping to get the word out. It is this due diligence and communication that enables law enforcement to most effectively protect the public.”

Sheriff Gannon said, “Prosecutor Carroll, Chief Richardson, Chief DiCarlo, and I agreed that this type of crime calls for pulling out all of the stops. The victim and the public deserve nothing less. After such a heinous crime, and especially when an imminent and public threat continues to be present, it is crucial to deliver a concerted and prompt response. This was done both to identify and apprehend the offenders, as well as to protect the people of Morris County until the danger is finally mitigated.”