Arrest made in Wine World assault, robbery

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BRICK TOWNSHIP — Police arrested a 20-year-old Princeton Junction man who allegedly attacked and robbed a Wine World employee.

With the help of the Ocean County Sheriff’s Department, Brick Township Police Department Dominick Puccio and Sheriff Officer Theodore Wiekichoski arrested Michael Martinez, 20, of Princeton Junction, on Friday, Sept. 8, who was charged with robbery, theft, possession of a weapon and possession of a weapon for unlawful purposes.

“He should be punished to the maximum,” said Wine World owner Kiku Patel.

According to Sgt. Neal Pedersen, of the Brick Township Police Department, Mr. Martinez allegedly attacked an employee of Wine World, located at 2085 Route 88, at approximately 10 p.m.

The victim was identified by Mr. Patel as Jaimin Shah.

According to Sgt. Pedersen, Mr. Martinez allegedly struck Mr. Shah in the head with a large stick several times, causing him to fall to the ground. Mr. Martinez then allegedly removed the night deposit from his pants pocket, according to Sgt. Pedersen.

A second employee, who Mr. Patel declined to identify, overheard the incident and chased Mr. Martinez, who fled towards Coolidge Drive.

Brick Police Officers John Scott and David Thergesen responded to the scene, along with Sheriff Officer Wiekichoski and his K-9 partner Jax, who were nearby on an unrelated matter, according to Sgt. Pedersen.

Mr. Martinez was located in a wooded area at Roosevelt Drive and Coolidge Drive hiding in heavy brush.

Mr. Martinez was charged on a warrant and was remanded to the Ocean County Jail. Mr. Shah was treated for injuries on scene and refused further treatment, according to Sgt. Pedersen. 

For more on this story, read The Ocean Star—on newsstands Friday or online in our e-Edition.