TRENTON - The previous Trenton mayor is about to be sentenced for corruption, and voters in the capital city will head to the polls Tuesday to choose from six candidates vying to be their new leader.
Business consultant Paul Perez hopes to become Trenton's first Latino mayor, saying he wants to restore credibility to city government. "Trenton has a terrible history of dysfunctional government," he says, "a government that now has a history of corruption."
Trenton's former Police Director Jim Golden says fighting crime is his top priority. "Wanton, reckless violence to the extent that we recently had a church shot up in the middle of the day," he says.
A record number of murders were committed last year in Trenton, a city where nearly one third of the 84,000 residents live below the poverty line.
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Councilwoman Kathy McBride's own son was murdered 21 years ago. "It was a life-altering experience. It is one of the reasons I am here trying to fight for the betterment of the children of the city of Trenton," she says.
Candidate Eric Jackson says his administration would fight crime by police targeting the worst criminals. He says he would "focus specifically on the 50 to 75 most violence prone individuals in our city."
Rounding out the field of six are Bucky Leggett and Walker Worthy, who were unavailable for comment Monday.
A candidate needs to get 50 percent of the vote plus 1, to avoid a runoff, and with six candidates in this race it's likely there won't be a winner on Election Day.
Trenton's former Mayor Tony Mack will be sentenced this week on a corruption conviction.