Angelo J. Onofri, Esq., prosecutor of Mercer County, became president of the Mercer County Bar Association (MCBA) for 2018 at its annual Officers Installation Dinner at The Stone Terrace earlier this month. An active member of the MCBA for more than two decades, he served as a trustee for many years before becoming an officer in 2014. Mr. Onofri thanked outgoing 2017 MCBA President Robert E. Lytle, Esq. for guiding the association with grace and dignity. “Bob is the consummate professional. He raised our collective consciousness about the need for pro bono legal services. Because of his leadership, the number of lawyers volunteering to provide pro bono legal services has dramatically increased,” he said.
During his installation, Mr. Onofri announced his focus for 2018, “Mercer County Lawyers Care.” “The members of the MCBA have always been generous, both financially and with their time to a variety of community projects. Our Community Projects Committee has developed an ambitious agenda for this year, and each month there will be opportunities for our members to serve Mercer County, including serving meals at the Trenton Area Soup Kitchen and through Meals on Wheels, helping with a children’s picnic at a summer camp, and a Halloween party for senior citizens,” he said. He also announced the Clean Slate Expungement Project, scheduled for February.
Mr. Onofri has served as the Mercer County prosecutor since December 28, 2016. As the county’s chief law enforcement officer, he leads the 200-member prosecutor’s office. During his time as prosecutor, Mr. Onofri has focused his efforts on programs and initiatives that reduce violence and crime, foster community relationships, encourage the youth population, educate residents, and generally make Mercer County a safer, better place to work and live.
He was instrumental in the formation of the Mercer County Homicide Task Force and the Mercer County Shooting Response Team, and the expansion of the Mercer County Narcotics Task Force. Mr. Onofri is a member of the Attorney General’s Body Worn Camera and Officer-Involved Shooting working groups, and also serves on the Attorney General’s Trenton Violence Reduction Strategy Task Force.
By working closely in conjunction with local, state and federal partners, Mr. Onofri has involved Mercer County in gun buyback programs, expungement seminars, and Fugitive Safe Surrender, a highly successful initiative that encourages persons wanted for nonviolent felony or misdemeanor crimes to voluntarily surrender to the law in a neutral setting. He has assisted in expanding the Trenton Violence Reduction Strategy and developing the Trenton Fresh Start program.
Most recently, Mr. Onofri has played a vital role in New Jersey’s fight against prescription drug and heroin abuse. Through the implementation of the Narcan and One Voice programs in Mercer County, he is collaborating with law enforcement, health care and community organizations to provide first responders with the overdose antidote, make treatment and recovery resources available to addicts and their families, and host community forums in an effort to combat this epidemic through education, awareness, prevention and treatment.
Mr. Onofri began his career with the law firm of McCarthy and Schatzman, P.A., where he worked as a litigation associate for six years. He also served as the deputy Mercer County counsel and an assistant municipal prosecutor for the city of Trenton before joining the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office in May 1998.
Mr. Onofri graduated with high honors from Rutgers University and the Eagleton Institute of Politics. He earned his law degree from the Villanova University School of Law. He is also a graduate of the FBI’s Mid-Atlantic Law Enforcement Executive Development Seminar. He is admitted to the New Jersey Bar and the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey as well as the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.