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Prosecutors: Man in custody takes officer’s gun, shoots self

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HILLSIDE -

A man from Baltimore, arrested in Hillside, used a police officer’s weapon to take his own life.

Jermaine Covington, 41, is the man who the Union County Prosecutor’s Office says took his own life.

Covington was handcuffed to a bar in an area designated for processing suspects at the Hillside Police Station after his alleged involvement in a pair of auto related incidents, including an accident and attempted carjacking. 

According to prosecutors, while handcuffed to the bar, Covington suddenly grabbed the weapon of an officer who was walking by, right out of the holster, turned the weapon on himself and took his own life.

The circumstance of how it all played out remains under investigation. 

A woman identifying herself as Covington's wife emailed News 12 New Jersey, questioning how that could be possible, saying although he had a criminal past, as she put it, he loved his son way too much to take his own life.

She, like many, are looking for video and more answers on the incident.

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