Paul Braswell, 29

Newark, New Jersey
September 26, 2018

Agencies: Newark Police Department New Jersey

Cause of death: Shooting

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Last updated: about 3 years ago


Authorities say 29 year-old Paul Braswell was killed and another person wounded in a police-involved shooting in Newark Wednesday afternoon September 26, 2018.

The shooting happened at Lyons Avenue and Bergen Street around 3:30 p.m.

Dozens of Newark police officers responded to the scene and surrounded a pickup truck. A witness told Eyewitness News that eight to 10 shots were fired.

James Shaw was driving an SUV, stopped at a light, when undercover officers surrounded the pickup which was right behind him.

"And they're pointing guns at the car, and they say get your hands up, get your hands up, get out the car, get out the car," said Shaw. "He backed up, smashed into one of their cars and then went forward and smashed into me. Went on the sidewalk and smashed into the utility pole, head on. Next thing I know they start shooting back and forth."

When the gunfire ended, one of the suspects was wounded in the street while the other was motionless in the truck.

For hours, police waited him out, calling to him to surrender. But by the time a police robot smashed the passenger side window to take a look inside, he was dead.

Sources tell Eyewitness News the suspects were the subject of an undercover gun investigation. Family members identified one of the men as 29-year-old Paul Braswell, who comes from a family of Newark civil servants.

One of the streets in their South Ward neighborhood is even named for a family member.

Officials have revealed few details about the operation that led to the shootout, including how many officers fired at the suspects or whether they fired back.

"To be in the midst of that situation when you're facing your death is really crazy," said Shaw. "I was praying to God man that he'd spare me."