Officer Jovanny Crespo Found Guilty, National Center for Police Defense Speaks Out

(ESSEX, NJ)- On Wednesday July 5th, Essex County jury convicted Newark police officer Jovanny Crespo of shooting two men that were armed and fled a police traffic stop. 

Suspect Gregory Griffin, who has a history of past drug charges, fled a routine traffic stop after another officer spotted a handgun in the vehicle. Not only did Griffin and his passenger flee the scene, they also pointed a gun at Officer Crespo and tried to run him over. Officer Jovanny Crespo’s reaction was necessary and called for due to the danger that these two suspects presented to him, the other officers, and the public. The two men did not comply with the officers and repeatedly attempted to attack and harm the law enforcement officials on the scene. It was confirmed later that the suspect did have a loaded semi-automatic weapon in the front seat of the car.

Yet none of this information mattered to the prosecutor or the jury that found him guilty on all counts yesterday, ultimately leaving his wife and 4 children without their father due to unjust and anti-cop motives. 

“The National Center for Police Defense continues to stand with Officer Jovanny Crespo. We are committed to the continued support of him and his family and hope that law abiding and pro-police citizens will stand with us in the face of this unjust verdict,” NCPD President Jim Fotis said in a statement. 

Although many have been quick to call Officer Crespo a criminal, a murderer, and a killer, most people- including the prosecutor- will never have to make a life or death decision like he did. About the prosecution, Officer Crespo says, “He wasn’t in my shoes. He didn’t see that gun pointed directly at his face. He didn’t see that car driving erratic, putting other lives in danger. I saw a vehicle at 11 o’clock at night driving 70 mph on the other side of the road, putting lives at risk.”

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The National Center for Police Defense, Inc. (NCPD) is a 501©3 non-profit organization. All contributions are tax-deductible as allowed by law, and are made with the understanding that NCPD has complete discretion and control over the use of all donated funds. If we receive more than we need for any one law enforcement officer’s case, the remaining funds will be used to assist other officers and/or to help further other programs.