Newark man sentenced to life in prison for murdering store clerk

Rick King

NEWARK, NJ — Rick King, 34, of Newark, was sentenced to life in prison without possibility of parole for killing Amit Patel, a Newark store clerk.

Superior Court Judge Mark Ali sentenced King to life for the first-degree murder. He was also sentenced to a consecutive 40-year sentence for the robbery.

In December 2017, an Essex County jury convicted King of murder, witness tampering, armed robbery, aggravated assault on a police officer and weapons offenses. The evidence at trial showed, on the afternoon of Feb. 15, 2015, King went to the Roseway Liquors in the 700 block of Lyons Avenue and shot Patel in the head.

Patel, 28, of Edison died at the scene. Patel was the lone witness to a robbery previously committed by King. The state’s position was that King killed Patel to prevent him from testifying in the robbery case. The robbery occurred on Oct. 31, 2013.

While imposing sentence, Ali noted that King had 11 prior arrests and had been convicted of felonies on five prior occasions. Those crimes included possession of an illegal weapon and possession of narcotics.

Essex County Deputy Chief Assistant Prosecutor Roger Imhof, who tried the case with Assistant Prosecutor Mira Ohm, said, “This case came together because of the hard work of the (Essex County Prosecutor’s Office) investigative team and the Irvington Police Department.’’

Ohm added, “As tragic and senseless as this murder was, we hope the life sentence without possibility of parole will give the family some semblance of closure, after all these years.’’

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