Day: May 29, 2020

Hamilton Police Seek Help Locating Missing Juvenile


May 29, 2020


HAMILTON TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–Jasiana Martinez was reported missing on Friday May 29, 2020.  She was last seen at approximately 1300 hours on May 29, 2020.  Her whereabouts are unknown at this time but has previously been located in the area of Olden and Brunswick Avenues in Trenton, NJ.

Martinez is described as a 13 year old black female, 5’01, 120 lbs, with brown eyes and black hair.  It is unknown what she is wearing at this time.

Anyone with additional information regarding this incident is asked to contact Detective Kevin Krall of the Criminal Investigations Juvenile Section at (609) 689-5826 or the Hamilton Police Crime Tip Hotline at (609) 581-4008.

Hamilton Woman And Southhampton Man Arrested For Robbery In Hamilton

May 29, 2020

HAMILTON TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)—On May 27, 2020 at approximately 1:46 PM, Hamilton Police were dispatched to the Exxon Gas Station located at 3217 Quakerbridge Road on a report of a male brandishing a handgun.  An employee told police that a black male came to the station and requested Dutch Master Cigars.  The male was told to wait while the employee finished attending to other customers.  The male became irate and told the employee he would be back.  Approximately five to ten minutes later the male returned, exited a vehicle, and grabbed a black object in his waistband the employee believed to be a handgun.  The male demanded the cigars again and the employee walked into an employee only room, locked the door, and phoned police.  The male fled in a black vehicle driven by an unknown driver. 

On May 28, 2020 at approximately 2:00 PM, Detectives were able to locate the vehicle and suspects on the 400 block of Princeton Avenue and placed them under arrest.  The male was identified as Emmanuel Dixon of Southampton, NJ and the female was identified as Kelly Pulaski of Hamilton.  Dixon was charged with Robbery, Aggravated Assault, Terroristic Threats, Possession of Weapon for Unlawful Purpose, and Unlawful Possession of Weapon.  Pulaski was charged with Robbery and Hindering Apprehension.  The weapon which is reported to be an air soft handgun was not recovered.

Anyone with any information regarding this incident is asked to contact Detective Lawrence MacArthur of the Hamilton Police Division’s Criminal Investigations Section at 609-689-5827 or the Hamilton Police Crime Tip Hotline at 609-581-4008.

Despite having been charged, every defendant is presumed innocent until found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Statement by City of Trenton Mayor W. Reed Gusciora on the Senseless Death of George Floyd and the Unrest in the City of Minneapolis

May 29, 2020

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–As a human being, a son, an attorney, a municipal prosecutor, a state lawmaker, and the mayor of a racially diverse city that has played an integral role in shaping the American experience and the civil rights movement, I am outraged by the senseless death of Mr. George Floyd.

I believe that the police officers involved in this deadly incident, led by Derek Chauvin, should be indicted for their actions. I stand with the family of Mr. Floyd. I stand with the law enforcement officers and leadership across America who have condemned this egregious act. I wholeheartedly agree that it demands a complete examination by top investigators, including the FBI. 

Although I do not condone the violence and destruction that we’ve witnessed in Minneapolis, I empathize with the desperation and frustration fueling this response. Mr. Floyd’s death is provocative and shocking and a clear illustration of the widening rift between law enforcement and our communities — particularly communities of color and immigrants. 

In Trenton, where we are deeply proud of our culture and history, we are working hard to ensure that what is happening in the great city of Minneapolis does not spill over into our streets. Trenton Police Director Sheilah Coley, a 30-year veteran of law enforcement who leads the Trenton Police Department, is actively engaged in managing and deploying our hardworking police officers and personnel to control gang activity, violent crime, crimes against property, and financial crimes. The department’s community relations division is committed to strengthening police-community relations in all corners of our city, involving thought leaders and activists, community organizations and homeowners and renters. 

We stand in solidarity to seek justice for Mr. Floyd.

—Mayor W. Reed Gusciora

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Lakewood, NJ Man And Utah Man Indicted For $8 Million Credit Card Fraud

May 29, 2020

NEWARK, NJ—A grand jury today indicted two men, one from Ocean County, New Jersey, and the other from Utah, with carrying out a fraudulent scheme to obtain credit cards in the names of third parties, make purchases on the cards to generate rewards points, monetize the points, and cancel the purchases.

Aharon Lev, a/k/a “Aaron Lev,” a/k/a “Aron Lev,” a/k/a “David Gold,” a/k/a “David Monroe,” 33, of Lakewood, New Jersey, and Timothy Gibson, 43, of Lehi, Utah, are charged by indictment with one count each of conspiracy to commit wire fraud. Lev is also charged by indictment with two counts of wire fraud and two counts of aggravated identity theft. Lev was previously charged by complaint and released on bond to Israel; he is required to return to New Jersey by June 9, 2020, to be arraigned on the indictment. Gibson will make his initial appearance at a date to be determined.

According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:

From August 2014 through May 2016, Lev recruited individuals to give him their personally identifiable information, such as names and Social Security numbers, which Lev used to open numerous small-business accounts in their names with the victim credit card company. With Gibson’s assistance, Lev then used those accounts to make purchases that generated rewards points, which could be redeemed for frequent-flyer miles with various airlines. Once the points were issued, Lev cancelled the purchases and sold the points to Gibson, who resold them to third parties for use as miles to purchase airfare. Over two years, the scheme cost the credit card company more than $8 million in fees paid to the airlines for acceptance of points for miles.

Each charge of wire fraud and conspiracy to commit wire fraud carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison, a $250,000 fine, restitution, and forfeiture. Each charge of aggravated identity theft carries a mandatory sentence of two years in prison, to be served consecutive to any sentence on the wire-fraud and conspiracy charges.

U.S. Attorney Carpenito credited special agents of the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Gregory W. Ehrie in Newark, and postal inspectors with the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, under the direction of Inspector in Charge James Buthorn, with the investigation leading to the charges.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Sarah A. Sulkowski of the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s Cybercrime Unit in Newark.

The charges and allegations contained in the indictment are merely accusations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.


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Governor Murphy and Lieutenant Governor Oliver Announce Short-Term Rental Assistance Program to Help Residents Affected by COVID-19 Pandemic

Program Will Provide at least $100 Million in Temporary Rental Assistance for Low- to Moderate-Income Households, Including the Homeless or Those at Risk of Homelessness

May 29, 2020

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–As part of the Murphy Administration’s overall response to assist New Jersey residents affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, Governor Murphy and Lieutenant Governor Oliver today announced the COVID-19 Short-Term Rental Assistance Program. The program will provide rental assistance to low- and moderate-income households that have had a substantial reduction in income as a result of the pandemic, including those who are homeless or at risk of homelessness.

“From the moment this crisis took hold, we’ve made it clear that New Jerseyans should not fear losing their home as a result of financial hardship caused by COVID-19,” said Governor Murphy. “This program will provide at least $100 million in housing relief for low- and moderate-income families who need it most. We’ll continue working closely with our legislative and community-based partners to further strengthen protections for tenants.”

The program will open for applications in July and begin paying rental assistance in September.  Qualifying households will be expected to pay 30 percent of their income toward rent, and the program would pay the remainder of their rent up to DCA’s fair market rent payment standard (see chart below). At the three-month mark, the household budget will be reviewed to determine if assistance is still needed. Assistance that is no longer required will be used to serve additional families.

“We understand the challenges families are facing at this difficult time and it is our goal to help as many people as possible, which is why we developed this new rental assistance program,” said Lt. Governor Sheila Y. Oliver, DCA Commissioner. “In addition to the new program, DCA is also urging households in need to apply for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), which helps people pay for their home energy bills.  With additional funding through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, New Jersey is able to help even more families cover their rent and energy expenses through this crisis.”

The program will devote approximately 20 percent of funding to serve those who are very low income and homeless or at risk of homelessness with up to 12 months of rental assistance. These households will be selected by DCA through the Coordinated Entry process in each county’s Homeless Management Information System. To help families reach self-sufficiency, case management, financial planning, and other assistance will be provided by the program.

For the remainder of the funding, DCA will administer an online lottery. When the lottery is opened, households may submit applications and participants will be selected from the overall pool of applicants through a randomized process based on eligibility and the lottery criteria. Applicants selected through the lottery will be eligible to receive up to six months of short-term rental assistance. Should further funding become available, DCA will serve additional households.

Households may qualify for the lottery based on the below standards:

Eligibility Requirements

  • Must be a New Jersey resident.
  • Maximum income up to 80 percent of area median income (AMI).
  • Must have been current in their rental payments as of March 1, 2020.
  • Must be able to provide proof of impact of COVID-19 beginning on March 9, 2020 when Governor Murphy declared the state of emergency.
  • Layoff;
  • Reduced work hours;
  • Unpaid leave to take care of children due to school and daycare closures; and/or
    • Need to self-quarantine for 14 days resulted in a loss of income 

The COVID-19 Short Term Rental Assistance Program website will launch on June 15 with additional information at

DCA will provide the centralized application intake, eligibility review, and payment directly to participants’ landlords. As part of the landlord contract, DCA will encourage landlords to agree to a reasonable payment plan for any rent arrearages, not to evict for any arrearages accumulated prior to the start of temporary rental assistance, and not to evict due to unpaid rent for six months after the end of assistance.

As more resources become available, DCA anticipates that the program might expand to assist additional families.

DCA offers a wide range of programs and services, including affordable housing production, fire safety, building safety, community planning and development, local government management and finance, and disaster recovery.

For more information about DCA, visit or follow the Department on social media: 

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NJ Human Services Announces Availability of Up to $20 Million in Health and Safety Grants for Child Care Centers and Youth Camps

$5k and $2k Grants Available; Emergency Child Care Assistance Program to Continue through June 30th

May 29, 2020

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–New Jersey Human Services Commissioner Carole Johnson today announced the immediate availability of up to $20 million in grants to assist child care centers and youth camps in meeting health and safety guidelines in response to COVID-19.

Child care centers can receive up to $5,000, while youth camps can receive up to $2,000. 

The money can be used to purchase additional cleaning products, personal protective equipment such as masks, gloves and thermometers, and other products and services to assist centers in complying with appropriate guidelines.

In addition, Human Services announced that the state Emergency Child Care Assistance Program, which is paying for child care services for essential employees identified in Executive Order 110, will continue through the end of June, when the program will end.   Applications will no longer be accepted after June 1st.

Human Services also will continue to pay child care centers throughout the month of June for the child care slots for children enrolled through the State’s child care subsidy program for families with lower incomes.  Payments will continue to be made based on the centers’ March subsidy enrollment.  

Between April 1st when child care centers were ordered to close and June 15th when centers can reopen, Human Services expects to have provided about $125 million in funding to centers for both emergency child care and state subsidy program child care slots.  Funding is intended to support families’ needs as well as the viability of the child care network.   

“The health and safety of the children served in child care settings and the dedicated staff who nurture and support them is paramount,” Commissioner Johnson said. “We encourage eligible child care centers and youth camps to apply for these grants to help comply with new public health guidelines.  We look forward to continuing to work with child care providers to support the educational development of the children served and the needs of the critical staff who make quality child care possible.”

The grants are available to licensed child care providers and youth camps that comply with updated state health and safety guidance. The providers must be registered with the NJ Workforce Registry and must apply through the New Jersey Child Care Information System (NJCCIS). Applications are subject to review and approval.

Providers who have received funding for these same services from other sources such as the federal government, school districts or private grants are not eligible for this funding.

“We are committed to doing all that we can to support child care during this challenging time,” Human Services Deputy Commissioner Elisa Neira said. “With these grants, child care centers and youth camps can be better prepared and ready to protect the all-important health and safety of both children and staff.”

The grants are the latest steps by Human Services to assist child care centers during the COVID-19 pandemic. Human Services has also:

  • Worked with child care centers throughout the state to fund emergency child care for essential employees;
  • Continued to pay child care providers for the slots used in March – when centers first closed – by children whose care is covered by the state’s child care subsidy program;
  • Waived parent co-pays in the state’s child care subsidy program for parents who requested it due to impacts from COVID-19; and
  • Delivered PPE to emergency child care centers.

“We urge residents to visit for additional information regarding the New Jersey Child Care Subsidy Program,” said Human Services Assistant Commissioner Natasha Johnson, who directs the Division of Family Development that oversees the child care program. “I also thank the child care centers and their staff for their amazing dedication and commitment during this difficult time.”

See related story here from earlier today: Gov. Phil Murphy Announces Additional Re-openings For Child Care Centers, Non-Contact Sports And Youth Day Camps

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Gov. Phil Murphy Announces Additional Re-openings For Child Care Centers, Non-Contact Sports And Youth Day Camps

May 29, 2020

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–A few moments ago Governor Phil Murphy announced re-opening dates for Child Care Centers 6/15, Non-Contact Sports 6/22, and Youth Day Camps 7/6, to resume with June and July dates. If an executive order or more is released from the Governor’s Office we will update the story.

The following can RESUME over the next several weeks if they follow health and safety safeguards:
🧸Child care centers can reopen 6/15
⚾Non-contact organized sports activities can restart 6/22
☀️Youth day camps, including municipal summer rec programs, can begin 7/6

Breaking: Early Morning Police Activity On Princeton Avenue In Trenton

May 29, 2020

Photos by: Brian McCarthy OnScene News

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Trenton Police and Trenton Emergency Medical Services responded to Princeton Avenue for a reported “gunshot victim” around 6:30 am. It is unknown if a victim was found and the scene was clear and roadway reopened within a half hour.

Breaking news: This is reported from observations from the scene. If and when we get more updated information this story will be updated.

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