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N.J. man waives arraignment in shooting

February 16. 2013 2:48PM

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WILKES-BARRE – An alleged gang member charged with shooting a rival gang member in the face outside a Plains Township nightclub has waived his right to a formal arraignment in county court.

Jerayme Johnson, 26, of Newark, N.J., waived his arraignment on an aggravated assault charge and a firearms violation, entering a plea of not guilty.

Police say Johnson shot Thomas Tonic, 22, in the face outside a nightclub at the Woodlands Inn & Resort in June 2010.

Johnson will next be scheduled for a pre-trial hearing before a county judge.

At Johnson's preliminary hearing in May, prosecutors withdrew the most serious charge, criminal attempt to commit homicide and additional charges of aggravated assault and firearms not to be carried without a license.

Johnson is jailed at the Luzerne County Correctional Facility for lack of $500,000 bail.

Police say Johnson is a member of the Bloods street gang, while Tonic associated himself with the Crips street gang.

Tonic, also of Newark, N.J., has since been named a material witness by prosecutors, meaning Tonic is on $25,000 unsecured bail with conditions that require him to appear at court hearings involving the case.

Prosecutors have said Tonic is agreeable to any plea deal made with Johnson.

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