Nov. 22, 2019
Man Sentenced to 65 Years for Murder
Newark — Acting Essex County Prosecutor Theodore N. Stephens, II, announced today that the Honorable Martin G. Cronin, Judge of the Superior Court, sentenced Hassan Todd, 31, of Newark to 65 years in New Jersey State Prison for the murder of Elijah Roberts, 30, also of Newark.
The defendant must serve 85 percent of his sentence before he is eligible for parole.
Assistant Prosecutor Jacqueline D. Bilinkas, who tried the case, argued for a life sentence saying Todd had multiple second chances but his crimes only grew more violent.
“This defendant had opportunities for rehabilitation starting with his first offenses as a juvenile but none of that was a deterrent. He started out with theft and drugs and ultimately escalated to murder,’’ said Assistant Prosecutor Bilinkas.
On Sept. 30, of this year an Essex County jury convicted Todd of murdering Roberts following a trial. The fatal shooting occurred on Sept. 22, 2018 outside a restaurant located in the 100 block of Avon Avenue in the City of Newark. Todd shot Roberts seven times, three times in the back. Todd also shot a second man in the leg.
The incident, which was captured on video surveillance, depicts Todd continuously shooting Roberts even after he is crawling on the ground around a parked car trying to escape the gunshots. Two witnesses, who identified Todd as the shooter, came forward and testified for the state.
Todd has four prior felony convictions for robbery, aggravated assault, drug offenses and resisting arrest.