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Township Man Pleads Guilty To Attempted Murder Of Police Officers

Archie Ashley

Archie Ashley of Somerset pleaded guilty to a number of charges connected to the attempted murder of several township police officers in 2013.
Photo: Somerset County Prosecutor’s Office.

A 27-year-old Somerset man faces 25 years in state prison after pleading guilty June 29 to a number of charges connected to the attempted murder of  four township police officers.

Archie Ashley pleaded guilty to four counts of 1st Degree Attempted Murder, 1st Degree Disarming a Law Enforcement Officer, 2nd Degree Possession of a Weapon for an Unlawful Purpose, 3rd Degree Resisting Arrest, 3rd Degree Burglary, 3rd Degree Theft and 3rd Degree Criminal Mischief. He also pleaded guilty to 3rd Degree Burglary and 3rd Degree Theft, relating to an incident from an earlier date, according to a press release from the Somerset County Prosecutor’s Office.

Ashley was involved in a violent fight with township police officer Robert Brown on Aug. 13, 2013, after Brown stopped Ashley in connection with an attempted house burglary on Buttonwood Drive. Brown stopped Ashley as the latter was walking behind St. Matthias Church on Overbrook Road.

Although he initially cooperated with the officer, Ashley soon stopped and then became aggressive, police said at the time. A struggle ensued, during which Ashley was able to grab Brown’s service weapon and allegedly point it at him.

Ashley fired off one shot, missing Brown, before other officers came to his aid, police said,

While they were attempting to disarm him, police said, Ashley was able to get off another shot.

He was eventually disarmed and arrested.

Ashley also pleaded guilty to burglary charges in connection with a June 20, 2013 burglary of a Cedar Brook Drive home. Security cameras and fingerprints were used to identify Ashely as the burglar, police said.

Ashley had been lodged in Somerset County Jail, Somerville, on $1 million bail. With the entry of his pleas, Superior Court Judge Kimarie Rahill revoked that bail and remanded Ashley to the jail.

Sentencing is set for Aug, 19, police said.

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