CLIFFSIDE PARK, N.J. -- The Hackensack trial of a Union City man on charges of molesting a 4-year old Cliffside Park girl was scrapped after the prosecutor in the case was forced to dismiss the indictment against him.
A change in the dates given by the girl for the alleged offenses made proceeding with the case against 52-year-old Jessy White difficult for Assistant Bergen County Prosecutor Demetra Maurice.
The child's age also was problematic, the prosecutor said.
Superior Court Judge James J. Guida dismissed jurors who were to begin hearing testimony on Tuesday.
“Your presence went a long way toward resolving the case," the judge told them. "You guys are done. Thanks a lot.”
White said he was relieved to be a free man but that his reputation was damaged.
Guida denied requests by Maurice to amend the indictment based on the new dates and one to allow her to make a new presentation to a grand jury. She was left to dismiss the indictment “without prejudice,” meaning that she can file new charges.
"We received new information within the last week that suggested some of the things the girl told her foster mother appear to have happened at another time than the complaint from the mother indicated,” Maurice said after the hearing. “Under those circumstances, dismissal was the right thing to do.”
The original complaint against White was brought by the former state Division of Youth and Family Services.
He was arrested on June 18, 2012, then posted $50,000 bail and was released from the Bergen County Jail two days later.
Maurice said she didn’t know yet whether she’ll move for a new indictment against White but plans to review the case.