AG Grewal Announces Indictment Of Man Charged With Attempted Murder And Bias Intimidation In Attempted Stabbing Of Store Clerk In Clifton

For Immediate Release: June 4, 2021

Office of The Attorney General
– Gurbir S. Grewal, Attorney General
Division of Criminal Justice

For Further Information:

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Peter Aseltine
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TRENTON – Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal today announced that a state grand jury has returned an indictment charging a man with attempted murder and bias intimidation in connection with the attempted stabbing of a grocery store clerk in Clifton in March.

Shairo Gil, 24, of Clifton, N.J., was charged yesterday, June 3, in a six-count indictment with the following offenses:

  1. Attempted Homicide (1st Degree)
  2. Bias Intimidation (1st Degree)
  3. Aggravated Assault (2nd Degree)
  4. Aggravated Assault With a Deadly Weapon (2nd Degree)
  5. Possession of a Weapon for an Unlawful Purpose (3rd Degree)
  6. Unlawful Possession of a Weapon (4th Degree)

Shortly before 3 p.m. on March 26, 2021, Gil entered Barrales Grocery, located on Main Avenue in Clifton, where he walked up to the store clerk and, without prompting, allegedly pulled out a knife and attempted to stab her. He allegedly lunged at her with the knife from across the counter where she was working. He made contact with the upper part of her chest, below the left shoulder, but she was not wounded. The investigation revealed that Gil allegedly was purposely targeting any individual of Mexican descent and believed the victim to be of Mexican descent.

“This defendant allegedly attempted to stab a woman solely because he believed she was of Mexican descent,” said Attorney General Grewal. “Our bias intimidation statute recognizes that hate crimes not only inflict great harm on the victims involved—they inflict great harm on society. We are pushing back against the rise in intolerance and hatred we have seen across New Jersey and the nation, and an important part of our efforts is fully investigating and prosecuting bias crimes. I commend the Clifton Police Department, whose quick response and full investigation of this incident led to the immediate arrest of the defendant on first-degree charges. I also commend our Bias Crimes Unit for their work in securing this indictment.”

Deputy Attorney General Danielle Scarduzio is prosecuting the case for the Division of Criminal Justice (DCJ) Specialized Crimes Bureau, under the supervision of Deputy Bureau Chief Jacqueline Smith, Bureau Chief Erik Daab, and DCJ Deputy Director Annmarie Taggart. Detective Brian Christensen is the case detective for the DCJ Bias Crimes Unit, under the supervision of DCJ Deputy Chief of Detectives Robert Stemmer and DCJ Chief of Detectives Weldon Powell.

Attorney General Grewal thanked the Clifton Police Department for its investigation. Detectives Scott Gibson and Diorys Turbides led the investigation for the Clifton Police Department.

The first-degree bias intimidation charge carries a sentence of 15 to 30 years in state prison. The attempted murder charge carries a sentence of 10 to 20 years in state prison, with parole ineligibility equal to 85 percent of the sentence imposed. Second-degree charges carry a sentence of five to 10 years in prison, while third-degree charges carry a sentence of three to five years in prison. Fourth-degree charges carry a sentence of up to 18 months in prison.

The indictment is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.

The indictment is posted at

Defense Attorney: Assistant Deputy Public Defender Latoya Cottingham, Passaic County.


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