Acting Essex County Prosecutor Carolyn A. Murray and Verona Police Chief Mitchell Stern just announced that Jose A. Asencio, 44, of Newark has been arrested and charged in connection with the death of Matthew BeneduceMcGrath, 59, of Verona:
At approximately 9:30 p.m. on June 24, BeneduceMcGrath was struck and killed crossing the street at Bloomfield Avenue and Hillcrest Terrace. He was rushed to University Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 9:58 p.m.
Surveillance video identified a light colored Ford van as the vehicle that struck the victim. Yesterday, Asencio, the driver of the van at the time of the collision, was arrested and charged with leaving the scene of an accident causing death, a second degree offense.
The Honorable Alfonse J. Cifelli, Judge of the Superior Court, authorized the arrest warrant for Asencio. He was arrested and transported to the Essex County Correctional Facility in Newark. Bail was set at $150,000 with a 10 percent cash option.
The investigation remains active and ongoing. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office Homicide/Major Crimes Task Force tips line at 1-877-TIPS-4EC or 1-877-847-7432.