Two Men Sentenced in Connection with June 2019 Motor Vehicle Chase in Denville, New Jersey

September 9, 2020

 

Morris County Prosecutor Fredric M. Knapp, Morris County Acting Chief of Investigations Christoph Kimker, and Denville Township Police Chief Frank Perna announce the sentencing of two males in connection with a motor vehicle incident that occurred on June 13, 2019 in Denville, New Jersey.

On August 27, 2020, Wanya McHenry, age 19, with a last known address in Newark, New Jersey, was sentenced by the Hon. David H. Ironson, J.S.C. to four (4) years in New Jersey State Prison with 18 months parole ineligibility.  On May 27, 2020, McHenry entered guilty pleas to second degree Use of a Juvenile in Theft of Automobiles and third degree Receiving Stolen Property before Judge Ironson.

On September 4, 2020, Alakir Wardlaw, age 20, with a last known address in Orange, New Jersey, was sentenced by the Hon. David H. Ironson, J.S.C. to five (5) years in New Jersey State Prison with 42 months parole ineligibility.  On April 22, 2020, Wardlaw had entered guilty pleas to second degree Unlawful Possession of a Handgun, second degree Employing a Juvenile in Theft of Automobiles, second degree Eluding, third degree Theft of a Motor Vehicle, and third degree Resisting Arrest before Judge Ironson.

The charges arise from an attempted car theft that occurred in Denville, New Jersey on June 13, 2019.  While responding to a report of a stolen Dodge Durango at approximately 1:38 a.m., Denville Police encountered two vehicles, including the stolen Dodge Durango and Toyota Highlander.  Further investigation revealed that the Toyota Highlander was previously reported stolen out of Montclair, New Jersey.  When police attempted to conduct a traffic stop of the Dodge Durango, the Toyota Highlander impeded the stop and both vehicles fled from police.  The Dodge Durango ultimately crashed into a Denville Police Department patrol vehicle and the driver and passenger fled on foot. The driver of the stolen Dodge Durango was subsequently identified as Alakir Wardlaw; the passenger of the vehicle was identified as a juvenile male.  A subsequent search of the stolen Dodge Durango that was driven by Wardlaw revealed a defaced handgun.  Shortly after the chase, police located the stolen Toyota Highlander abandoned a short distance away.  The driver of the Highlander was subsequently identified as Wanya McHenry.

Prosecutor Knapp acknowledges members of the Denville Township Police Department, the Morris County Sheriff’s Office Crime Scene Investigation Unit, and the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crimes Unit who contributed to the successful prosecution of this matter.

Any inquiries about this press release can be directed to Morris County Prosecutor’s Office Press Information Officer Meghan Knab at 973-829-8159 or [email protected]