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Police: Englewood House Sitter's Shooter Wore Ski Mask, Ditched Keys, Phone

At the scene Tuesday morning.
At the scene Tuesday morning. Photo Credit: Cecilia Levine

ENGLEWOOD, N.J. -- A ski mask-wearing robber who shot a house-sitting Garfield man in Englewood overnight took the victim's car keys and cellphone and tossed them into a catch basin a block away as he escaped, police said Tuesday afternoon.

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UPDATE: Detectives from the Bergen County prosecutor's office solved a pair of shootings in Englewood with the arrest of a Teaneck ex-con -- whom a judge ordered held on $1 million. CLICK HERE TO READ THE FULL STORY .

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Police found the 33-year-old victim next to the house at 316 Howland Avenue around 4 a.m., Detective Capt. Timothy Torell told Daily Voice.

A single bullet went through both of the his legs, Torell said.

The cellphone and keys were found after a newspaper photographer who went to the scene heard the phone ringing near the corner of Howard and Oak, he said.

"The motive was robbery and the victim was specifically targeted," Torell said, adding that an undisclosed amount of cash was taken along with the phone and keys.

"Often, assailants will take cell phones and keys from victims in an effort to make it more difficult for their victims to call police or to drive to a phone so police can be summoned," he noted.

The home was the site of a chop shop operation smashed by city detectives nearly a year ago with the arrest of a local man and his son.

"We don't believe the shooting is related to that," Torell said.

The victim remained at a local hospital Monday morning while detectives continued to investigate.

The captain said he didn't believe the shooting was connected to one the other day at the Forest Gardens apartments.

Anyone with information that could lead authorities to the robber is eligible for a cash reward. Call Crimestoppers at 1-844-466-6789.

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