A man from East Orange has been arrested and charged with first-degree murder in connection with the killing of a DoorDash driver, according to the Passaic County Prosecutor’s Office.
Quadir Whitaker, 34-year-old, was arrested on Monday afternoon, authorities said. He is also charged with first-degree unlawful possession of a weapon, second-degree unlawful possession of a weapon, possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose, unlawful possession of a weapon, certain persons not to possess firearms, and third-degree resisting arrest.
Charges against Whitaker spring from the killing 43-year-old Petra Rhoden of Paterson on October 4, 2019.
Rhoden was making a food delivery in the area of 259 Harrison Street at around 10:22 p.m. when she was approached from behind by a male suspect. The suspect opened fire. Rhoden was able to get back into her car and drive away. Her vehicle was found a short distance away. It had crashed through a fence and struck a shed.
Inside, police located Rhoden with an apparent gunshot wound. She was given CPR and rushed to St. Joseph’s University Medical Center. She died a short time later at the hospital.
Detectives determined the shooter got into the passenger seat of a vehicle driven Whitaker and fled the scene. Authorities said the suspect’s vehicle had been following Rhoden’s vehicle as she picked up food at a local drive through to make her last delivery.
Prosecutors will file a motion for pretrial detention when Whitaker appears before a judge sometime next week.
Authorities ask anyone with information about the incident to call the Paterson Police Detective Bureau at 973-321-1120.