On January 20th, 2018 at approximately 10 pm, newly hired Police Officer Daniel Cunha was driving his personal vehicle on Cedar Avenue, when he observed and heard an argument on the corner of Cedar and Ocean Ave. The participants were screaming in Portuguese, and Cunha is fluent in Portuguese. He saw them attempting to hold a male subject back from appearing to assault a female. They were screaming in Portuguese for him to calm down.
Officer Cunha pulled his vehicle over and took action, identifying himself as a Police Officer and approaching the incident. A quick interview confirmed the male subject was intoxicated and attempting to assault his girlfriend. Cunha was attempting to use his cell phone to call headquarters, when the subject, later identified as Matheus Tavares Emidio, charged Cunha screaming that it didn’t matter that he was a cop. Emidio began to assault Cunha, as Cunha attempted to block his blows while he finished calling headquarters. Eventually, Cunha put his phone away and took Emidio to the ground, holding him there until CPL Robert Korn arrived. Someone else had called 911 while the incident was ongoing, reporting a fight. Korn, unaware that it was Cunha on top of Emidio, pulled him off. Emidio took this opportunity to flee the area on foot.
A foot pursuit ensued, with Emidio losing the officers in the backyards of the houses along 2nd Avenue. Cunha assisted Korn in interviewing the victims, and they learned that Emidio lives in Pleasure Bay Apartments. Officer Chris Gant responded to the area, and located Emidio on the north side of the complex, and ordered him to stop. Emidio fled again, and Gant was joined by another rookie Officer, Connor Mullan and his Field Training Officer, David Stone. Mullan caught Emidio as he ran on the water behind Pleasure Bay, and took him to the ground on the ice about 5 feet onto the frozen river. Emidio continued to fight, attempting to bite Mullan’s left ear and grab his face. Mullan was joined by Gant and Stone and was placed under arrest.
Officer’s Mullan and Stone suffered abrasions and to their hands and knees and some cuts to their uniforms, and Cunha was brought to Monmouth Medical for a cut on his hand. He landed on a rock when he took Emidio to the ground in the initial incident.
Mathues Tavares Emidio was charged with 3 counts of Aggravated Assault on a Police Officer, and 2 counts of resisting arrest, and a $350 warrant out of Long Branch. He was transported to the Monmouth County Correctional Institution. US Immigration and Customs Enforcement was also notified and a detainer has been sent to the jail. Emidio is 21 years of age, single, and was residing in Pleasure Bay.
Information supplied by Long Branch Police Chief Jason Roebuck