Officials: Newark Police Officer Recovering From Serious Head Injury After Assault

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Just before 1:45 am on March 23, 2019, a Newark Police Officer was on patrol on North College Avenue in Newark. At that time, the officer observed a disturbance in the roadway. The officer observed a male subject holding on to the door handle of a vehicle as the female driver of the vehicle was yelling at the male to let go of the door to the vehicle. The officer attempted to make contact with the male, who ignored the officer’s command to stop, according to Lt Andrew Rubin. The officer was able to make contact and stop the male, at which time the male attempted to punch the officer. The officer was able to take the male into custody and he was transported to Newark Police Headquarters.

The female operator of the vehicle was found to be driving for a ride share service at the time of the incident. She had no involvement with the male and had not been requested to provide him a ride.

While at Newark Police Headquarters, the male resisted efforts by officers to remove him from the vehicle and refused to provide any identifying information. Once officers got him into the Newark PD cell block processing area, the male continued to resist and struggle with the officers.

The man, who police say was found to be intoxicated, threatened the officers. He then used his legs to trip one of the officers, bringing him to the ground, according to Rubin. As the officer fell, the officer struck his head on a metal counter and then fell to the concrete floor.

The man, later identified as Alexander Mastronardi, 19, of Bernardsville, New Jersey was charged that evening with misdemeanor offenses related to the incident and was released.

Subsequent to the arrest, the officer was found to have suffered a serious head injury directly related to striking his head as he was taken to the ground. The officer was admitted to the critical care unit at an area hospital in serious condition, where he remained for over a week. The officer has since been transferred to a rehabilitation center for further treatment. The officer is assigned to the Patrol Division, said Rubin.

On April 8, 2019, Mastronardi was taken into custody by Newark Police Detectives to be charged with more serious charges.

Mastronardi was charged with Assault in the First Degree on a Law Enforcement Officer, Resisting Arrest with Force or Violence, Disorderly Conduct by Obstructing Vehicular or Pedestrian Traffic and Underage Consumption of Alcohol.

Mastronardi appeared before Justice of the Peace Court #11 in New Castle. He was ordered held on $32,400 secured bail.

His custody was transferred to the Howard R. Young Correctional Facility in Wilmington.


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First State Update's Delaware editorial team covers New Castle County, Kent County and Sussex County breaking news, political news, and general news stories. We bring the reader the latest news from the Wilmington, Newark, Dover, Rehoboth Beach and all point in between. If you have news to share, email us at desk@firststateupdate.com.

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