For Immediate Release: February 28, 2022
Office of The Attorney General
– Matthew J. Platkin, Acting Attorney General
Office of Public Integrity and Accountability
– Thomas J. Eicher, Executive Director
Note: Members of the press can email the Communications Office to obtain a link to download the recordings.
Hillsborough, N.J. – The Attorney General’s Office today released three 911 calls, video footage from four body worn cameras, a Taser camera video, and police radio communications related to a fatal police-involved shooting that occurred on Jan. 9, 2022 in Hillsborough, N.J. The decedent has been identified as Joshua Mathis 19, of Hillsborough.
The fatal shooting remains under investigation by the Office of Public Integrity and Accountability (OPIA). The recordings are being released in response to an OPRA request and pursuant to policies established by the Attorney General’s Office in 2019 that are designed to promote the fair, impartial, and transparent investigation of fatal police encounters. Investigators met today with Mr. Mathis’ family to review the recordings.
According to the preliminary investigation, at approximately 6:12 p.m. on Jan. 9, officers of the Hillsborough Police Department responded to Corporal Langon Way after three 911 calls. Two of the 911 calls were made by Mr. Mathis. When officers arrived, they encountered Mr. Mathis inside an apartment holding a knife. During the encounter, Mr. Mathis also took out an imitation gun from his waistband, which he threw to the floor. At approximately 6:26 p.m., Mr. Mathis advanced toward the officers with the knife raised. Officer Christopher Michaels deployed his Taser at Mr. Mathis and then fired his service weapon, fatally wounding Mr. Mathis. Police and emergency medical personnel rendered first aid, and Mr. Mathis was pronounced deceased at the scene at 6:51 p.m.
The recordings are posted online: Click here for recordings.
The investigation is ongoing and no further information is being released at this time.
This investigation is being conducted pursuant to a state law enacted in January 2019 (P.L. 2019, c.1), which requires that the Attorney General’s Office conduct all investigations of a person’s death that occurs during an encounter with a law enforcement officer acting in the officer’s official capacity or while the decedent is in custody. Separately, the Independent Prosecutor Directive, which was issued in December 2019, outlines a 10-step process for conducting these investigations. The Directive establishes clear procedures governing such investigations to ensure that they are conducted in a full, impartial, and transparent manner. Under both state law and the Directive, when the entire investigation is complete, the case will be presented to a grand jury, typically consisting of 16 to 23 citizens, to make the ultimate decision regarding whether criminal charges will be filed.
A copy of the Directive is available at this link:
and a summary of that 10-step process is available at this link: