Jury deliberations underway in trial of Newark police officer Jovanny Crespo in fatal 2019 shooting

Jury deliberations continue Monday in the trial of a former Newark police officer who opened fire on a fleeing vehicle during a 2019 chase, killing the driver.

It happened on January 28, when 35-year-old Andrew Dixon and 46-year-old Gregory Griffin were stopped by an officer in the area of Clinton Avenue and Thomas Street.

Griffin allegedly pulled away when an officer spotted a handgun in the vehicle, prosecutors say.

A number of police cars gave chase, with Crespo firing shots at three separate locations while running alongside the car.

Both men in the car were shot in the head, and Griffin died the next day. Dixon was seriously injured but survived.

Officer Jovanny Crespo was caught on video during the incident.

Prosecutors argued that Crespo’s actions were reckless, as he jumped out of a moving police cruiser on three separate occasions to fire at the fleeing vehicle.

Crespo said he saw guns in the vehicle, but other officers said the car’s tinted windows prevented them from seeing inside.

In addition to being suspended by the Newark Police Department, Crespo was charged with aggravated manslaughter, aggravated assault and official misconduct in a six-count indictment.

If convicted on all counts, he faces life in prison.

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