Video obtained by TAPintoNewark.net, a hyper local news network, shows the Rev. Manuel A. Cruz speaking at the Cathedral Basilica of the Sacred Heart Saturday as a man in a cream-colored suit and hat saunters onto the platform, followed by a security guard.
A auxiliary bishop in the Archdiocese of Newark who was punched at the start of Mass on Saturday night recovered enough from the incident to address some members of the congregation at services on Sunday.
Forty-eight-year-old Charles Miller, who has no criminal history, was arrested on a simple assault charge. He hit the bishop in the mouth and knocked hi to the ground before the suspect was tackled by police.
"As a former altar boy, a lot of people thought, 'oh he might be part of the Mass, ' but I myself thought it was little odd right off from the gate. Some people ducked, others screamed", Bonamo said.
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The man slugged Cruz, but was quickly taken into custody by police officers in the church.
The bishop said he needed 30 stitched to his mouth. "I'm only a human being, but otherwise I am OK".
Miller was charged with aggravated assault and has been detained in the Essex County Correctional Facility.
In response to the attack, a spokesman for the Archdiocese of Newark said: "We certainly were surprised and saddened by it, and are thankful that things were not worse than they turned out to be". Investigators have not yet released a motive for the attack.