Bridgeton man convicted in shooting of NJSP detective

tremaine hadden

A Bridgeton man faces decades in prison after a jury convicted him on six counts in the 2020 shooting a State Police detective.

Tremaine Hadden, 30, was part of a mob of 15 people who descended on a Salem County mobile home park in a caravan of five vehicles with the intent of attacking and injuring a resident and damaging her home, according to the charges.

Detective Richard Hershey was at the scene April 25, 2020, investigating an earlier home invasion at Harding Woods on Harding Highway in Pittsgrove.

The caravan included those armed with at least two handguns, a knife and a bottle.

Some of them confronted Hershey , who identified himself as a law enforcement officer and gave commands in an effort to control the intruders.

Hadden shot at Hershey numerous times from one vehicle while two other men fired from another vehicle, according to the charges.

Najzeir “Naz” Hutchings and Kareen “Kai” Warner, also both from Bridgeton, pleaded guilty to aggravated assault earlier this month.

Hershey was struck in the hip and seriously wounded. He returned fire, and the suspects fled the scene.

“Those who resort to violence against our courageous men and women in uniform as they try to do their duty and protect the public will be held accountable,” Attorney General Matthew Platkin said. “Law enforcement officers daily put themselves in danger in service to their communities, and my office will prosecute criminals who threaten or injure them to the fullest extent of the law. We look forward to bringing the remaining defendants in this case to justice.”

A jury convicted Hadden of aggravated assault, conspiracy, unlawful possession of a weapon, possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose, certain persons not to possess weapons and riot.

“We are gratified that the jury convicted Tremaine Hadden after he shot one of New Jersey’s finest while acting in the line of duty,” said Thomas Eicher, executive director of the Office of Public Integrity and Accountability. “Hadden and the other defendants demonstrated contempt for the law and for law enforcement. By heroically confronting this mob and putting his own life at risk, Detective Hershey likely saved others from injury or worse.”

Jurors were unable to reach a verdict on a charge of attempted murder. 

“This brazen assault on Detective Richard Hershey endangered the lives of innocent bystanders, and by standing his ground while outnumbered and under a barrage of gunfire, Detective Hershey undoubtedly prevented this from becoming a mass casualty incident,” State Police Superintendent Colonel Patrick J. Callahan said. “We never relented in our pursuit to hold these individuals accountable for their violent criminal conduct.”

The remaining suspects were charged with second-degree conspiracy to commit aggravated assault and third-degree rioting, while some were additionally charged with weapons offenses.

Hadden faces more than 40 years in prison.