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Lodi Man Charged With Murder In Passaic Drive-By Shooting

Nelson J. Vargas
Nelson J. Vargas Photo Credit: COURTESY: Passaic County Prosecutor

PASSAIC, N.J. – A Lodi man was charged with murder and attempted murder, among other counts, in a drive-by shooting in Passaic that killed one victim and injured another.

Nelson J. Vargas, 24, was the shooter when Hansel Castillo, 23, of Passaic was killed and a 20-year-old Woodland Park man was injured on Federal Street just before 11:30 p.m. May 15, Passaic County Prosecutor Camelia M. Valdes and Passaic Police Chief Luis Guzman said.

Members of Valdes’s Major Crimes Homicide Unit and Passaic detectives were trying to determine “whether Mr. Castillo and the second victim were the intended targets of the shooting,” both said in a release.

Besides murder and attempted murder, Vargas is charged with conspiracy and weapons possession, they said.

He was scheduled for a first appearance Thursday in Superior Court in Paterson.

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