NEWARK – Two police officers handling a domestic dispute were stabbed and a third kicked in the knee Thursday afternoon.

Public Safety Director Fritz Fragé said the officers were attacked after responding to the Aston Heights apartment building on Martin Luther King Boulevard around 4:45 p.m. where a woman was being stabbed. The assault started in an apartment and continued in a hallway where a male neighbor intervened and was stabbed.

The assailant, Michael D. Cherry, 32,  of East Orange, stabbed the two officers as they tried to disarm him. One officer was stabbed in the back and right hand while the other was stabbed in the right arm. A third officer was kicked in the knee causing a laceration, according to Fragé.

The three officers were taken to University Hospital where they were in stable condition as of Friday afternoon.

Michael Cherry
Michael Cherry (Newark police)

Cherry was taken into custody at the scene, according to Fragé. He was charged with attempted murder, aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, unlawful possession of a weapon, possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose, disarming a law enforcement officer, and terroristic threats.

“We cannot thank these brave Newark Police Officers enough for their selfless restraint in the face ofimminent danger,” Fragé said. “Their actions led to the safe arrest of this armed suspect. Police Chief Emanuel Miranda joins me in highly commending the officers and trusting that they will both experience a speedy and complete recovery from their injuries.”

“We are relieved that the officers’ injuries in this incident were non-life-threatening and that the suspect was arrested without further incident. These officers showed both immense bravery and restraint that were unmatched,” Newark Mayor Ras Baraka said.

A security officer told ABC 7 Eyewitness News the man was a frequent visitor to his girlfriend who lives in the building. Video of the aftermath shows staff cleaning blood from the floor.

Aston Heights is a five-story, 154-unit development built in 2019. It is in the city's Springfield/Belmont neighborhood, four blocks south of Downtown.

Dan Alexander is a reporter for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach him at

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