Month: October 2021

Multiple Injuries In NJ Turnpike Crash In Hamilton Township

October 24, 2021

HAMILTON TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–At 9:35 p.m., Saturday, October 23, the Robbinsville Township Fire Department and Bordentown Township Fire Department were dispatched to the New Jersey Turnpike at mile marker 57 for multiple motor vehicles involved in a crash with entrapment. EMS from Robbinsville, Bordentown and Capital Health Paramedics responded to the scene plus additional BLS ambulances were also dispatched. Once the extrication was completed it was reported that five people were transported to local hospitals and others injured did not seek transport to the hospital. No further information if available at this time. NJ State Police is investigating the crash.


NJ Transit Police Investigating Fatal Pedestrian Strike In Trenton, NJ

October 23, 2021

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–A New Jersey Transit spokesperson told MidJersey.news that at 1:44 p.m. the New Jersey Transit River Line Light Rail Train departed the Camden Waterfront for Trenton with a scheduled arrival time of 2:51 p.m. The Light Rail Train fatally struck a male pedestrian at the South Broad Street grade crossing in Trenton at approximately 2:52 p.m., the age of the male is unknown at this time. There were no injuries to the approximately 30 customers on board or to the Light Rail Operator. The River Line Light Rail was suspended between Trenton and Bordentown and is now back on schedule. The New Jersey Transit Police are investigating the incident.






Tractor-trailer Runs Off NJ Turnpike In Robbinsville; Driver Transported To Hospital

October 23, 2021

ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–At 6:16 a.m. the Robbinsville Township Fire Department, Robbinsville EMS and Capital Health Paramedics were dispatched to the New Jersey Turnpike in the area of mile marker 64 outer lanes for a tractor-trailer off the roadway with an injury to the driver. Robbinsville firefighters arrived and found the vehicle crashed though a guard rail and was well off the roadway. The driver was transferred to EMS and transported to RWJ at Hamilton Hospital with unspecified injuries or medical condition. Georges Garage was on scene this morning removing the tractor-trailer that was a good ways off the highway. New Jersey State Police is investigating the crash. No further details are available at this time.



East Windsor Police Blotter Through October 20, 2021

October 22, 2021

EAST WINDSOR, NJ (MERCER)–The East Windsor Township Police Department initiated the following police reports through Wednesday, October 20, 2021.

1. DUI

Location: Dorchester Drive Time/Date: 8:43 PM, 10/14/2021

The officer conducted a motor vehicle stop after observing the vehicle with an obstructed view. The driver exhibited signs of impairment and was placed under arrest after failing field sobriety tests. The driver was later released pending court action.

Defendant:             Mario Jimenez, East Windsor, NJ 35 Years of Age

Charges:                DUI

Reckless Driving Careless Driving Obstructed View

Failure to Dim High Beams

Consumption of Alcohol in a Motor Vehicle Open Container of Alcohol in a Motor Vehicle

Arresting Officer: Patrol Officer Thomas Nicola


2. DUI

Location: Route 571/Route 130 Time/Date: 4:00 PM, 10/15/2021

The officer conducted a motor vehicle stop after discovering that the driver’s license was suspended. The driver exhibited signs of impairment and was placed under arrest after failing field sobriety tests. The driver was later released pending court action.

Defendant:

Charges:

Paul Rutzler,

East Windsor, NJ 52 Years of Age

DUI

Reckless Driving Careless Driving

Driving While Suspended Unlicensed Driver Uninsured Motor Vehicle

Arresting Officer: Patrol Officer Nicholas Hoffman


3. DUI

Location: Dutch Neck Road/Oak Creek Road Time/Date: 2:15 PM, 10/17/2021

The officer conducted a motor vehicle stop after observing the vehicle failing to maintain its lane of travel. The driver exhibited signs of impairment and was placed under arrest after failing field sobriety tests. The driver was later released pending court action.

Defendant:             Juan Ordonez-Toledo,

East Windsor, NJ 38 Years of Age

Charges:                DUI

Reckless Driving Careless Driving

Failure to Maintain Lane Arresting Officer: Patrol Officer Michael Pidhorecki


4. Eluding

Location: Route 130/Route 571 Time/Date: 4:55 PM, 10/17/2021

The officer attempted to conduct a motor vehicle stop after observing the vehicle fail to observe a traffic signal.   The vehicle failed to stop and eluded the officer in a reckless manner by committing multiple infractions in the immediate vicinity of several pedestrians. The East Brunswick Police later located the driver at a residence in their jurisdiction and placed him under arrest. The individual was detained in the Mercer County Jail pending court action.

Defendant:             Amir Cureton,

East Brunswick, NJ 33 Years of Age

Charges:                 Eluding Obstructing Justice Reckless Driving Careless Driving

Driving While Suspended Unlicensed Driver

Failure to Stop for Emergency Vehicle Disregard Traffic Control Device X2 Circumventing a Traffic Signal Obstructing Traffic

Failure to Maintain Lane Arresting Officer: Patrol Officer Nicholas Hoffmann


5. Assault on Law Enforcement Officer Location: Probasco Road

Time/Date: 6:30 PM, 10/18/2021

The officer responded to the area of Kipling Lane for a report of individuals possibly arguing. The officer located one of the involved individuals walking on Wyckoff Mills Road. The officer discovered that the individual had an active warrant and attempted to place the individual under arrest. The individual physically resisted and spit on the officer. The individual was eventually arrested and later released pending court action.

Defendant:            Sukhjit Singh, East Windsor, NJ 25 Years of Age

Charges:                Assault on a Law Enforcement Officer

Resisting Arrest

Arresting Officer: Patrol Officer Evan McNamara


6. Theft

Location: Walmart (839 Route 130 North) Time/Date: 10:30 PM, 10/18/2021

The officer responded to Walmart for a reported shoplifting. The individual left prior to police arrival, but a Hightstown police officer stopped the suspect vehicle nearby. Investigation revealed that the individual left the store without paying for $598.28 worth of merchandise. The individual was placed under arrest and later released pending court action.

Defendant:                  Staisha Signal, Hamilton,  NJ 24 Years of Age

Charges:                Shoplifting

Arresting Officer: Patrol Officer Joseph Amejka


All accused are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a Court of law.


Hamilton Township to Discuss Environmental Clean-Up of Former Nearpara Rubber Site at Public Meeting

October 22, 2021

HAMILTON TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–Hamilton Township will host a public meeting to present and discuss proposed remediation and the future plans for redevelopment, of the former Nearpara Rubber Company site.

Nearpara Rubber Company opened in the late 1920s where they processed tires from across the region at the property, located at 1849 East State Street until they closed down in 1990. The site has been abandoned ever since and has faced public scrutiny over environmental health concerns including mosquito harborage areas and contaminants that have leached into the ground beneath the property.

The Hamilton Township Council has twice approved resolutions supporting a redevelopment study of the property funded by a grant awarded to the Township by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection. The Hazardous Discharge Remediation Fund provides grant monies to public entities to cover the full costs of investigation and a portion of the costs for the cleanup of contaminated sites identified as areas in need of redevelopment. Hamilton Township has been awarded over $250,000 to date through this grant.

“The NJDEP’s grant has allowed the Township to evaluate the environmental state of the property and provide an understanding of the scope of work needed to clean it up and turn it into something our residents can appreciate,” stated Mayor Jeff Martin. “Our goal is to redevelop the site within a three-year period after it has been fully remediated and is safe.”

The public meeting to discuss the remediation and redevelopment plans is being held at 6:00 PM on Monday, October 25 at the Hamilton Township Senior Center. For more information, please contact the Hamilton Township Division of Planning at (609) 890-3674 or visit www.HamiltonNJ.com/Planning



Mayor Dave Fried Announces Lieutenant Michael Polaski Promoted To Chief Of Robbinsville Police Department Effective January 1, 2022

October 22, 2021

ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–Robbinsville Township Mayor and Director of Public Safety Dave Fried announced today that Lieutenant Michael Polaski has been promoted to Chief of the Robbinsville Township Police Department effective January 1, 2022.

Polaski, in his 23rd year at the department, will work under outgoing Chief Chris Nitti until midnight on December 31, 2021. He will remain in his role as the Township’s Office of Emergency Management (OEM) Coordinator.

“Lieutenant Polaski has been an integral part of this organization for the past 23 years,” said Nitti, who announced his retirement September 13. “His skillset and experience make him the ideal selection. The department is in very good hands, and this will be a very seamless transition.”

Lt. Polaski, 46, grew up in Lacey Township, where he began his law enforcement career as a Special Officer in 1994. Hired as a Patrolman by then-Washington Township in March of 1999, Lt. Polaski was promoted to Patrol Sergeant in 2003, then Patrol Lieutenant in 2009. Lt. Polaski was named Administrative Lieutenant and OEM Coordinator in 2016. He resides in Point Pleasant with his wife of 18 years and two sons.

“I am humbled and honored by this opportunity,” Lt. Polaski said. “I appreciate Mayor Fried, Administrator (Joy) Tozzi and the rest of the selection panel for having the faith in me to lead this great department. Like every other man and woman on the force, I come to work every day to serve and protect the residents of Robbinsville, and I look forward to doing so in my new role as Chief. I also want to thank Chief Nitti for his leadership and for being such a great mentor to me. I wish him the best of luck in retirement. I want to extend my sincere appreciation to the men and woman of the RTPD for their support and dedication to protecting the residents and businesses of Robbinsville. I will be proud to serve as your chief.”

Since the retirement of Marty Masseroni in 2015, officers Nitti and Polaski bring a combined 58 years of law enforcement experience to the position of Chief.

“We’ve been extremely fortunate to have enjoyed such great leadership at the top of our police department,” Mayor Fried said. “We’re really proud of Mike. His work as OEM Coordinator during the pandemic has been exemplary, and the selection panel has every confidence he will maintain the legacy of great Chiefs at the RTPD.”



18-County Indictment Against Man Charged With Soliciting Illicit Photos And Videos Of Teenage Girl, Then Distributing To Family Members In Retaliation

October 22, 2021

FREEHOLD, NJ (MONMOUTH)–A Monmouth County Grand Jury has returned an 18-count indictment against a man charged with soliciting illicit photos and videos from a teenage girl, then distributing them to members of her family in retaliation for her threatening to break off contact with him, Acting Monmouth County Prosecutor Lori Linskey announced Friday.

David Lopez, 38, of Jersey City is charged with first-degree Manufacturing Child Sexual Abuse Materials, five counts of second-degree Endangering the Welfare of a Child via Distribution of Child Sexual Abuse Materials, three counts of third-degree Endangering the Welfare of a Child, single counts of third-degree Making Terroristic Threats, third-degree Criminal Coercion, and third-degree Endangering the Welfare of a Child via Possession of Child Sexual Abuse Materials; and six counts of fourth-degree Cyber Harassment.

An investigation by the Keansburg Police Department that grew to also involve members of the Prosecutor’s Office revealed that Lopez had made contact with the victim via social media sometime prior to August 2020, and thereafter asked her to send him sexually explicit photos and videos.

After several such exchanges, the investigation revealed, the victim indicated that she preferred to cease communications with Lopez – who responded by sending some of the photos and videos to no fewer than half a dozen of her family members, including children as young as 11. In addition, Lopez allegedly threatened to harm the victim’s family, threatened to have other individuals harm them, threatened to burn down their house, and told her he could make her life “a living hell.”

Lopez was arrested at his home on August 25, 2020, after which he was released on home detention and ordered to have no contact with the victim and no Internet access while the criminal case against him remained pending.

Anyone with additional information about Lopez’s activities is being asked to contact Keansburg Police Department Detective Lt. Bryan King at 732-787-0600.

Convictions on first-degree criminal charges can result in terms of 10 to 20 years in state prison, while second-degree crimes can yield penalties of 5 to 10 years.

This case is being handled by Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutor Ryan Lavender. Lopez is being represented by Joshua Hood, Esq., with an office in Freehold.  

Despite these charges, every defendant is presumed innocent, unless and until found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, following a trial at which the defendant has all of the trial rights guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution and State law.  


Mercer County Releases Proposed Final Master Plan For Moores Station Quarry In Hopewell Township

October 22, 2021

HOPEWELL TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–HOPEWELL TOWNSHIP – The Mercer County Park Commission has released its proposed final master plan for the redevelopment of Moores Station Quarry located in Hopewell Township, adjacent to Baldpate Mountain. The plan can be found on the Park Commission’s website here 

Research on options for repurposing this industrial quarry into a park was led by a team of consultants and Park Commission staff, and included outreach to a variety of potential user groups and stakeholders. A preliminary draft of the master plan was posted for public review on July 12, 2021, and feedback from the public in response to the draft plan was considered in the development of the final plan. The public comment period provided areas of improvement for the industrial quarry site, including topics in recreation, environmental restoration, education and accessibility. “Turning this unique site into public open space is a major undertaking, and the Park Commission has worked diligently to formulate a proposal that would serve as a long-term vision for park improvements,” said Mercer County Executive Brian M. Hughes. “I thank our community members for providing valuable input that has helped guide this process.”

The proposed master plan will be considered for adoption during the October Park Commission meeting on Wednesday, Oct. 27. The online public meeting will begin at 5:30 p.m. A meeting notice and link to the webinar can be found here

“Over the past year, the redevelopment plan for this 166-acre site has reflected the Park Commission’s commitment to the public process,” said Park Commission Executive Director Aaron T. Watson. “Close to 150 responses to the draft plan were reviewed, and that feedback helped shape the final master plan. Public insight gave our team new opportunities to explore that we are excited to implement as we move forward.”

Quarrying operations by Trap Rock Industries will cease at the site in the spring of 2023, when a 25-year agreement with the quarry operator will expire. At that point, the Park Commission will take possession of the site and begin a multi-year process of transforming the open-pit quarry into a park.

The Park Commission has retained a multi-disciplinary team to help develop the master plan, led by Simone Collins Landscape Architecture of Norristown, Pa. The team includes landscape architects, geologists, engineers, ecologists, wildlife biologists, sustainability experts and real estate market analysts.


Serious Accident Involving A School Bus In Lakewood

October 21, 2021 — Update October 22, 2021

Last evening just before 9pm, Officer Matthew McAvoy was dispatched to the area of 978 River Avenue for a motor vehicle crash involving a school bus. Upon arrival he determined that a 2020 Dodge Challenger, driven by 22 year old Moshe Wasserman, was traveling south on River Avenue when he was cut off by a 2019 Ford Expedition. The driver, 37 year old Shulem Ekstein tried turning into the parking lot of 978 River Avenue when Wasserman struck the passenger side of his vehicle. After the two collided, the Dodge Challenger crossed over into the northbound lane of River Avenue and struck a school bus, operated by 38 year old Ira Itzkowitz head on. At the time of the accident, the bus was transporting several students, however, at the time of this release the exact number has not been confirmed. Thankfully, no one was seriously injured during the crash, however the operator of the Dodge Challenger did complain of ankle pain and was transported to a local hospital for further medical evaluation. The operator of the Ford Expedition received a summons or Careless Driving.

LAKEWOOD, NJ (OCEAN)–Just after 9:00 p.m. an accident was reported in the 900 Block of River Avenue/Route 9 south in front of Leisure Chateau Care & Rehabilitation Center, involving three vehicles with one being a school bus. There was one person transported by EMS to a local hospital. Lakewood Fire Department responded and applied oil absorbent for a fluid spill. Lakewood Police are investigating the crash.

Trenton Man Charged With 4 Counts Assault By Auto – DUI, Reckless Driving, Careless Driving, Failure To Maintain Lane And Open Container In East Windsor Crash That Injured Allentown High School Students

October 21, 2021

EAST WINDSOR, NJ (MERCER)–East Windsor Police have charged a Trenton man that caused a serious crash the morning of September 20, 2021 that injured Allentown High School students that at least two are also on the soccer team for the high school.

According to police, in the course of the investigation, a Mercer County Superior Court Judge granted a search warrant to obtain blood from the driver of the truck. The blood was subsequently collected and analyzed. The toxicology report revealed that the driver’s blood alcohol content was above the legal limit. The investigation also revealed that the driver of the truck was at fault as his vehicle crossed the double yellow lines and entered the westbound lanes of travel. The driver was arrested, charged, and released pending court action.

Defendant:

Charges:

Hector Esteban-Palomo (41 Years of Age) Trenton, NJ

Assault by Auto – 4 Counts DUI

Reckless Driving Careless Driving

Failure to Maintain Lane

Open Container of Alcohol in a Motor Vehicle


All accused are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a Court of law.



Original MidJersey.News story here:

EAST WINDSOR, NJ (MERCER)–According to East Windsor Police, on Monday, September 20, 2021, at approximately 7:00 a.m., East Windsor Police responded to Windsor-Perrineville Road and Cedarville Road for a report of a head-on motor vehicle collision involving multiple injuries. One of the vehicles was a sedan with four juvenile occupants; the other was a pickup truck with a sole occupant. Upon arrival, East Windsor Police, Robert Wood Johnson EMS, Capital Health Paramedics, East Windsor Rescue Squad # 1, East Windsor Rescue Squad #2, Robbinsville EMS, and Millstone Fire-EMS personnel immediately began administering first aid to several individuals. Millstone Township Fire Department, Hightstown Fire Company and East Windsor Fire Company responded and extricated a passenger from the sedan.

All four individuals in the sedan suffered serious injuries. The driver was transported to Capital Health Regional Medical Center by Millstone Township Fire Department EMS. The front passenger and a rear seat passenger were transported to the McKnight Elementary School by Robert Wood Johnson EMS and East Windsor Rescue Squad #1 and then transported by medevac to RWJ New Brunswick by NJ State Police Northstar Medical Helicopter and RWJBarnabas Health Helicopter. A third helicopter from Hackensack Meridian Health was not needed. The other rear seat passenger was transported to Capital Health Regional Medical Center by Robbinsville EMS. The driver of the pickup truck suffered minor injuries and was transported to RWJ New Brunswick by East Windsor Rescue Squad #2.

Police say, the preliminary investigation revealed that the sedan was traveling west on Windsor-Perrineville Road and the pickup truck was traveling east on Windsor-Perrineville Road. The vehicles collided, head-on, near the intersection of Cedarville Road. The East Windsor Township Police Department and the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office Serious Collision Response Team are actively investigating the crash.

Vehicle Involved:

Driver:

2005 Toyota Tundra
New Jersey Registration: C27EXU

Hector Esteban-Palomo (41 Years of Age) Trenton, NJ

Vehicle Involved:

Driver:

2019 Nissan Sentra
New Jersey Registration: Z64NHX

Driver: Juvenile (17 Years of Age) Front seat passenger: Juvenile (16 Years of Age) East Windsor, NJ

Rear passengers: Juvenile (16 Years of Age) Juvenile (14 Years of Age) Millstone, NJ

Charges: None

Responding Agencies:

East Windsor Township Police Department, Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office Serious Collision Response Team, Capital Health Paramedics, East Windsor Rescue Squad #1, East Windsor Rescue Squad #2, Millstone EMS, Robert Wood Johnson EMS, East Windsor Fire Company 1 & 2, Robbinsville Township Fire Department & EMS, Millstone Township Fire Department, Hightstown Fire Company, NJ State Police Northstar Helicopter, RWJBarnabas Health Helicopter, Hackensack Meridian Health Helicopter.





South Plainfield Man Sentenced 24 Months In Prison For Attempting To Interfere With Law Enforcement Officers During A Civil Disorder In Trenton

October 21, 2021

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–A Middlesex County, New Jersey, man was sentenced today to 24 months in prison for attempting to interfere with law enforcement officers during a civil disorder when he attempted to set fire to a police vehicle during a riot in Trenton, Acting U.S. Attorney Rachael A. Honig announced.

Justin D. Spry, 22, of South Plainfield, New Jersey, previously pleaded guilty by videoconference before U.S. District Judge Brian R. Martinotti to an information charging him with one count of attempting to obstruct, impede, or interfere with law enforcement officers during a civil disorder affecting commerce. Judge Martinotti imposed the sentence by videoconference today.

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

On May 31, 2020, large-scale protests were held throughout the United States, including in Trenton, in response to the death of George Floyd. Although the May 31st protest in Trenton was peaceful earlier in the day, violence erupted later. A group of individuals proceeded down East State Street in downtown Trenton and began to riot, smashing store fronts, looting stores, and attacking multiple marked Trenton Police Department vehicles parked on the 100 Block of East State Street.

A Trenton street camera and other video footage taken by an individual present on the street captured Kadeem Dockery light an explosive device and throw it through the open front driver’s side window of a Trenton Police Department vehicle. Dockery then removed his shirt and handed it to Killian Melecio, who then attempted to stuff the shirt in the gas tank of the police vehicle and ignite it. Melecio was then assisted by Spry in attempting to set fire to the police vehicle. Law enforcement officers on scene arrested Spry, but Melecio and Dockery fled. Law enforcement later identified Melecio and Dockery through analysis of street camera and other video footage. They were arrested on Aug. 5, 2020.

Melecio pleaded guilty on Jan. 26, 2021, to his role and was sentenced June 28, 2021, to 28 months in prison. Dockery pleaded guilty on May 19, 2021, to his role and is scheduled to be sentenced Oct. 26, 2021.

In addition to the prison term, Judge Martinotti sentenced Spry to three years of supervised release.

Acting U.S. Attorney Honig credited special agents of the FBI and task force officers of the Joint Terrorism Task Force in Newark, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge George M. Crouch Jr., with the investigation leading to today’s sentencing. She also thanked officers of the Trenton Police Department, under the direction of Acting Police Director Steve Wilson; troopers of the New Jersey State Police, under the direction of Col. Patrick J. Callahan; and officers of the New Jersey Department of Corrections, under the direction of Acting Commissioner Victoria L. Kuhn, for their assistance.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Alexander E. Ramey and Michelle S. Gasparian of the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s Criminal Division in Trenton.

21-474

Defense counsel: Benjamin J. West Esq., Trenton






Mercer County Executive Brian Hughes Brokers Solution To Temporarily Solve Trenton’s Ongoing Radio System Crisis

October 21, 2021

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Mercer County Executive Brian M. Hughes today conducted a private meeting with Trenton Mayor Reed Gusciora and Trenton City Council President Kathy McBride to broker a solution that will temporarily solve a crisis involving the city’s emergency radio system for first responders.  

At Mercer County’s Dempster Fire Academy, where the county’s 911 Central Communications Center is located, the mayor and council president agreed to Mr. Hughes’ offer to lend to Trenton 133 radios that the county has in its backup supply. By offering Trenton the use of the radios for up to six months, the mayor and council will have ample time to work through the city’s radio system problem and contract issues, Mr. Hughes said.  

The county’s portable radios are compatible with the dispatch system, and the county already handles the emergency medical technician (EMT) dispatch for Trenton.  

“This proposal is a win for everyone,” Mr. Hughes said, noting that Mayor and Council will have time to sensibly work together to conduct an open public bid for radios, award the bid and have new, state-of-the-art radios operational by the end of the year, and Mercer County will have helped to ensure that 911 dispatchers have immediate access to Trenton public safety personnel on compatible equipment and are able to keep the citizens safe.   


Statement From Mayor Gusciora on His Thursday Meeting With Mercer County Executive Brian Hughes and City Council President Kathy McBride on the City’s Emergency Communications System

On Thursday, I met with Mercer County Executive Brian M. Hughes and City Council President Kathy McBride to discuss the public-safety radio system for the City of Trenton.

Mr. Hughes agreed to temporarily loan our city approximately 130 handheld radios programmed to the county’s radio system. While Mercer County’s radio loan is not optimum, it helps carry the city over until a new system is in place. Mercer County’s assistance gives my administration time to work with Council President McBride to work in common cause on an agreement to replace the city’s aging radio system with equipment compatible with Mercer County’s emergency radio platform. This arrangement is the foundation of my permanent proposed solution.

I am very grateful to Council President McBride, who phoned me on Wednesday afternoon. She pledged for us to work together on this critical public safety issue for our residents and businesses.

Previously, a Resolution authorizing $4 million from the city’s American Rescue Plan (ARP) fund to pay for a new radio and 911 systems did not make the docket. Council tabled a Resolution to pay the city’s current police and fire radio-system vendor, MPS Communications, for overdue invoices, an issue headed for litigation. The company will pull the plug on the city’s radio system on October 31, endangering residents and public safety personnel.

Nonetheless, I am very grateful to Mercer County Executive Hughes for meeting with us, his leadership, and his expeditious assistance. And, I wish to thank City Council President McBride for her goodwill and willingness to work together on a permanent solution.



Overturned Truck On Broadway Road In South Brunswick

October 21, 2021

SOUTH BRUNSWICK, NJ (MIDDLESEX)–South Brunswick Police, Fire Departments and EMS responded to Broadway Road for an overturned dump truck at the curve around 9:00 a.m. Initially there was reported entrapment but the driver was able to self extricate. There were no injuries reported in the crash. The roadway was closed until the dump truck could up righted and towed away. South Brunswick Police are investigating.


Monroe Man Charged With Theft Of Election Campaign Signs On Applegarth Road

October 21, 2021

MONROE TOWNSHIP, NJ (MIDDLESEX)–Middlesex County Prosecutor Yolanda Ciccone and Chief Michael Biennas of the Monroe Police Department announce a Township man has been charged in connection with the theft of election campaign signs.


On October 19, 2021, Timothy Eosso, 51, of Monroe was arrested and charged with one count of disorderly persons theft by unlawful taking.


An investigation by members of the Monroe Police Department determined that, on October 7, 2021, Eosso removed roadside campaign signs from the area of Applegarth Road.


The investigation is active and continuing. Anyone with information is asked to call the Monroe Police Department at (732) 521-0222 x130.


As is the case with all criminal defendants, the charges against Eosso are merely accusations and he is presumed innocent until proven guilty.


Update: Fatal Crash Yesterday In Monroe Township

October 21, 2021

MONROE TOWNSHIP, NJ (MIDDLESEX)—According to police, at 12:41 p.m. yesterday October 20, a 2007 Lexus traveling south on Bentley Road was approaching an intersection with Route 33 West Bound. That vehicle was being driven by 81-year-old Monroe Township resident Murray Lipman and entered the intersection with Route 33 passing stop signs on Bentley Road. The vehicle was struck on the driver’s door by a vehicle being driven by 39-year-old Manalapan resident, that drive was transported by Monroe Township First Aid with non-life treating injuries. Murry Lipman the driver of the Lexus succumbed to injuries sustained in the accident. The crash investigation is ongoing and being conducted by the Monroe Township Police Department.


Car Overturns On Mercer Street In East Windsor

October 21, 2021

EAST WINDSOR, NJ (MERCER)–Around 7:00 a.m. a vehicle traveling on Route 33/Mercer Street near Airport Road left the roadway and overturned. East Windsor Police, East Windsor Fire Company, Hightstown Engine Company and Robbinsville Fire Department responded to the scene for a vehicle on its roof and on fire. Upon arrival it was determined that the occupants were able to get out of the vehicle on their own and the vehicle was not on fire. Police closed Mercer Street between Airport Road and Hickory Corner Road and until the vehicle could be removed from the roadway. Robbinsville EMS responded to the scene as well as Hightstown and East Windsor EMS but no patients were transported to the hospital. The crash is being investigated by the East Windsor Police Department. No further details are available at this time.

Breaking: 2 People Stabbed In Head In Trenton

October 20, 2021

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Trenton Police and Trenton EMS responded to the area of 1452 South Clinton Avenue for a stabbing around 11:20 p.m. Upon arrival EMS found two victims stabbed to the head and requested an ALS advanced life support unit and an addition BLS ambulance to the scene. At 11:29 p.m. two trauma alerts were called and the ambulances were en route to the Trauma Center at Capital Health Regional Medical Center. No further information is available at this time.


Weapons Charges Filed Against Pennsylvania Woman That Killed 87 Year Old Father And 75 Year Old Girlfriend In Surf City

October 20, 2021

SURF CITY, NJ (OCEAN)–Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley D. Billhimer and Surf City Police Chief John N. Casella, Jr., announced that on October 20, 2021, Sherry Lee Heffernan, 55, of Landenberg, Pennsylvania, was charged with Possession of a Weapon – specifically a handgun – for an Unlawful Purpose in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:39-4a, as well as Unlawful Possession of a Weapon in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:39-5b.

Heffernan was previously charged on October 5, 2021 with two counts of Murder in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:11-3a(1), in connection with the deaths of John Enders and Francoise Pitoy in Surf City on or about September 29, 2021.  Heffernan was also charged on that date with Possession of a Weapon -specifically a knife – for an Unlawful Purpose in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:39-4d, as well as Unlawful Possession of Weapon in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:39-5d.

On October 3, 2021, at approximately 4:00 p.m., Officers from the Surf City Police Department responded to a residence on North 7th Street to conduct a welfare check upon the residents.  When they arrived, Officers located the bodies of John Enders, 87, of Surf City, and Francoise Pitoy, 75, of Manchester; it was readily apparent that both victims were already deceased.  On October 4, 2021, the Ocean County Medical Examiner performed a post-mortem examination of Mr. Enders and determined the cause of his death to be multiple stab wounds with severance of the right carotid artery and blunt force trauma; the manner of death was ruled to be a homicide.  A post-mortem examination of Ms. Pitoy performed on October 5, 2021 determined the cause of her death to be multiple stab wounds as well as a gunshot wound to the face; the manner of her death was likewise ruled a homicide.  Based upon the gunshot wound to Ms. Pitoy, the Medical Examiner performed an additional examination of Mr. Enders and found that he had also suffered a gunshot wound to the face.

An investigation by the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crime Unit, Surf City Police Department, and Ocean County Sheriff’s Office Crime Scene Investigation Unit revealed that the victims were involved in a dating relationship, and that Mr. Enders was the primary owner the residence.  Ms. Pitoy stayed with him at the residence regularly. The cooperative investigation ultimately determined that Heffernan, Mr. Enders’ daughter, was responsible for the deaths of both Mr. Enders and Ms. Pitoy. “The discovery of additional evidence demonstrating that Heffernan used a handgun in the commission of this crime – in addition to a knife – precipitated the filing of these additional weapons charges,” Prosecutor Billhimer stated.

On October 4, 2021, Heffernan was taken into custody by the Pennsylvania State Police at her residence in Landenberg.  On October 20, 2021, Heffernan was returned to New Jersey and served with the new weapons charges.  She is currently lodged in the Ocean County Jail pending a detention hearing.

Prosecutor Billhimer and Chief Cassella commend the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crime Unit, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Economic Crime Unit, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Intelligence Squad, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office High Tech Crime Unit, Ocean County Sheriff’s Office, Ocean County Sheriff’s Office Crime Scene Investigation Unit, Surf City Police Department, Long Beach Township Police Department, Stafford Township Police Department, New Jersey State Police, Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office, Ocean County Medical Examiner’s Office, Ocean County Motor Vehicle Services, Pennsylvania State Police, Collegeville (Pennsylvania) Police Department, Horsham Township (Pennsylvania) Police Department, Montgomery County (Pennsylvania) District Attorney’s Office, Chester County (Pennsylvania) District Attorney’s Office, Maryland State Police, and North East (Maryland) Police Department, for their collective and cooperative assistance in connection with this investigation leading to Heffernan’s apprehension.

The charges referenced above are merely accusations and the press and public are reminded that all defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law. 

R.P.C. 3.6(b)(6).



Former Lanoka Harbor EMS Volunteer Pleads Guilty To Theft

October 20, 2021

LACY TOWNSHIP, NJ (OCEAN)–Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley D. Billhimer announced that on October 19, 2021, Matthew Bender, 33, of Lacey Township, pled guilty to Theft in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:20-3, before the Honorable Linda G. Baxter, J.S.C.  At the time of sentencing on December 7, 2021, the State will seek a term of probation, together with full restitution, forfeiture of his lifetime membership with the Lanoka Harbor Emergency Medical Service (LHEMS), resignation from his position with the Lacey Township Police Department, and forfeiture of any current or future public office or employment in the State of New Jersey.

This charge was the result of an investigation conducted by the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Economics Crime Squad in the Spring of 2021.  The investigation revealed that Bender, a volunteer with the LHEMS as well as a dispatcher with the Lacey Township Police Department, was responsible for maintaining the LHEMS website.  Bender also had access to the LHEMS PayPal account.  Between April 2020 and March 2021, the LHEMS received multiple donations from private citizens, and was also awarded monies from various grant applications.  Further investigation revealed that the grant money was disbursed to the LHEMS PayPal account managed by Bender, and that that approximately $4700 was transferred from the LHEMS PayPal account to Bender’s personal PayPal account.  The investigation exposed numerous purchases by Bender – in small denominations – for various restaurants, pharmacies, and auto stores, confirming that the funds were not used for the benefit of the LHEMS.  It was determined that Bender misappropriated these monies for personal use.

Prosecutor Billhimer acknowledges the diligent efforts of Senior Assistant Prosecutor Christopher Heisler and Assistant Prosecutor Taylor Toscano who handled the case on behalf of the State, as well as the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Economic Crime Squad, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office High Tech Crime Unit, Lacey Township Police Department, and Berkeley Township Police Department, for their collaborative efforts in connection with this investigation resulting in Bender’s guilty plea.


Governor Murphy Signs Executive Order Instituting Vaccination or Testing Requirement for State Contracted Employees

October 20, 2021

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Governor Phil Murphy today signed Executive Order No. 271, which requires new and potential state contractors to demonstrate that all of their employees who enter, work at, or provide services in any state agency location are fully vaccinated or otherwise undergo weekly testing. “This executive order will bring state contractors in line with the requirements set for all direct state employees,” said Governor Murphy. “Quite simply, we must ensure that everyone providing service to the people of New Jersey is being held to the same public health safety and standards.” Among the provisions in EO 271 are that:

  • Each executive department and agency including independent authorities will to the extent permitted by law, ensure that contracts or agreements entered into by the executive department or agency include a clause that the contractor or any subcontractors, at any tier, that is party to the contract must maintain a policy that requires all covered workers to either provide adequate proof to the covered contractor that they have been fully vaccinated or submit to COVID-19 testing at minimum one to two times weekly;
  • The order will apply to any new contract, new solicitation for a contract, extension or renewal of an existing contract, and exercise of an option on an existing contract, if it is a contract for services, construction, including demolition, remediation, removal of hazardous substances, alteration, custom fabrication, repair work, or maintenance work, or a leasehold interest in real property through which covered workers have access to State property, and the cost or contract price thereof is to be paid, in whole or in part, with or out of executive department or agency funds.
  • Covered workers must provide proof of vaccination which includes:
  • The CDC COVID-19 Vaccination Card issued to the vaccine recipient by the vaccination site, or an electronic or physical copy of the same;
  • Official record from the New Jersey Immunization Information System (NJIIS) or other State immunization registry;
  • A record from a health care provider’s portal/medical record system on official letterhead signed by a licensed physician, nurse practitioner, physician’s assistant, registered nurse or pharmacist;
  • A military immunization or health record from the United States Armed Forces; or Docket mobile phone application record or any state specific application that produces a digital health record.

The order is effective immediately.Copy of Executive Order No. 271


Firefighters Extinguish Fire In Abandoned John A. Roebling’s Sons Complex

October 20, 2021

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Around 11:50 a.m. the Trenton Fire Department was dispatched to the area of first block of Mott Street at the abandoned John A. Roebling’s Sons Company & American Steel & Wire Company. Upon arrival firefighters reported fire on the second floor of a 400 x 60 foot commercial building. Firefighters pulled a handline and went to work to knock down the fire. Firefighters extended a ladder to knock down the hot spots in the roof area. Firefighters remained on scene for quite some time for overhaul and making sure the fire was extinguished since it was located in a difficult place to acess. The official address for the complex is 650 South Clinton Avenue but the fire was located on the Mott Street side of complex.

No further information is available at this time.





Traffic Alert Serious Accident On Route 33 West Bound In Monroe Township

October 20, 2021

MONROE TOWNSHIP, NJ (MIDDLESEX)–Monroe Township Police, EMS and Monroe Township Fire Departments responded to Route 33 West Bound at Bentley Road for a serious motor vehicle crash with entrapment around 1:30 p.m. It was unclear the seriousness of the injuries or who was transported to the hospital. The roadway was shut down at Prodelin Way-Perrineville Road intersection with Route 33 West. The detour westbound was though Monroe Township. As of 4:00 p.m. the roadway is still shut down for the accident investigation. No further details are available at this time.


Firefighters Respond To Fire Inside Food Manufacturing Plant In Robbinsville

October 20, 2021

ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–Firefighters responded to a fire alarm inside CJ Foods TMI Manufacturing at 2 Applegate Drive yesterday October 19, at 5:35 p.m. Upon arrival firefighters found a smoke condition inside the plant and searched for the source of the smoke. Firefighters located an industrial motor on fire and extinguished the fire. Two ambulances and a paramedic unit were called to the scene for workers exposed to smoke but no employees were transported to the hospital. Fire departments remained on scene for quite some time evacuating smoke and overhauling the fire. The Robbinsville Health Department was called to the scene as normal protocol since the fire was in a food manufacturing plant. The Robbinsville Township Fire Marshal is investigating the fire.

Responding agencies: Robbinsville Township Fire Department, Hamilton Township Fire Department, Hope Fire Company of Allentown, East Windsor Fire Company, Hightstown Fire Department, Robbinsville EMS and Capital Health Paramedics.

No further information is available at this time.

Trenton Mayor and First Responders Ask City Council to Advance Proposals to Keep Trenton’s Emergency Communications Online

City has a Deadline of Oct. 31, 2021 to Pay Radio Service Provider

October 19, 2021

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Mayor W. Reed Gusciora – flanked by clergy, city residents, union representatives and his police, fire, and EMS command staff – today called on Trenton City Council to approve payment to the City’s radio service provider and advance the Administration’s proposal to upgrade Trenton’s outdated emergency communications equipment at no additional cost to city residents.

Currently, Trenton is on a trajectory to have its entire radio system shut off by the end of the month. City Council has indefinitely tabled a September 2021 resolution to pay the city’s current radio service provider, MPS Communications, for services rendered. The vendor has stated it will shut off service on Oct. 31, 2021.

As a result, the Trenton Police Department (TPD), Trenton Fire and Emergency Services, Trenton Water Works and other city personnel will suffer reduced capacity to dispatch emergency communications to responders in the field or talk with one another during an active crisis.

“The first responsibility of any government is to secure the safety of its people,” said Mayor Gusciora. “Yet here we are on the eve of our radio service being shut off for all city entities including police and fire and Council leadership has refused to advance our proposals to pay what we owe and fund badly needed police radio updates. One thing is certain: our residents and first responders will be at greater risk if our radio service is terminated with no alternative course in place.”

Keeping the MPS system running is only a temporary fix. The Gusciora Administration has proposed a resolution allocating $4 million in American Rescue Plan (ARP) funds to replace the police radio equipment and 911 dispatch center so they are compatible with the Mercer County radio system, which Trenton can use at no additional cost.

Unfortunately, that resolution has also been tabled by Council beyond the October 31 deadline, but the Administration expects that a member of City Council will attempt to walk the resolution back on the agenda at tonight’s City Council meeting at 5:30 p.m.

“This is exactly the type of project the American Rescue Plan is meant to support,” said Acting Trenton Police Director Steve E. Wilson. “This $4 million-dollar proposal would allow us to make a badly needed investment in public safety without taking on additional debt. And the fact that this upgrade will also allow us to use the Mercer County radio system for no additional cost makes it an even better deal for Trenton residents.”

TPD has been trying for years to obtain funding to upgrade and replace its radio systems and equipment. A study commissioned by City Council concluded in May 2020 that the systems are outdated and not compliant with industry safety standards. However, Council has not approved any additional MPS bids and most recently tabled a resolution on Sept. 16, 2021 to authorize payment of Trenton’s outstanding balance with MPS.

Meanwhile, TPD has been working with Mercer County since August 2021 to explore moving to the county system. A memo circulated by the Biden Administration in July 2021 encouraged police technology investments using ARP funds, of which Trenton will receive $73 million. The $4 million proposal to update the TPD radio system is included in Mayor Gusciora’s ARP spending plan at www.talktrenton.org.


Marty’s Place In Upper Freehold Township To Join Senior Dog Rescue Organizations Nationwide In Celebrating “Saving Senior Dogs Week”

National Senior Dog Awareness Campaign to Benefit Senior Dog Rescues in the United States October 25 – 31, 2021

October 19, 2021

UPPER FREEHOLD, NJ (MONMOUTH)–Marty’s Place Senior Dog Sanctuary is pleased to announce its participation in the third annual Saving Senior Dogs Week from October 25 – October 31.

Presented by Lily’s Legacy Senior Dog Sanctuary in California, Saving Senior Dogs Week is a week-long national social media and PR campaign to increase public awareness of the struggles of homeless senior dogs, the joys of adopting them, to reduce unnecessary euthanasia, and to provide existing senior dog rescues across the country with much-needed funding to carry out their missions. www.savingseniordogsweek.org

“We are excited to be joining forces with senior dog rescues nationwide in raising awareness and funds for senior dogs,” said Doreen Jakubcak, Marty’s Place founder and executive director.

NEW FOR 2021: Saving Senior Dogs Week is thrilled to partner with the New York Dog Film Festival™ for their 2021 campaign. The New York Dog Film Festival™ supports animal welfare organizations across the country that focus on the most vulnerable dogs: the older ones. A portion of every ticket sold across the country will benefit all the participating rescues of Saving Senior Dogs Week. Marty’s Place will be featured in this year’s Festival. The Festival Premiere on October 24th kicks off Saving Senior Dogs Week, but, of course, the life-saving rescues and adoptions take place all 52 weeks of the year, as does the festival’s support of their work.

According to Alice Mayn, executive director of Lily’s Legacy Senior Dog Sanctuary, and creator of Saving Senior Dogs Week, support for the campaign has grown each year.  “The continued and growing support from our sponsors and rescues has been phenomenal. We still have a long way to go but I feel incredibly positive about the progress and difference we are making.”

It is estimated that approximately 670,000 shelter dogs are euthanized each year in the United States. Senior dogs are the least likely to be rescued or adopted from shelters and are most at risk of being euthanized. Although there are an estimated 14,000 animal rescue organizations nationwide, approximately 50 of them are dedicated exclusively to rescuing, rehabilitating and re-homing senior dogs.

Seventy-five percent of the proceeds from the fundraising campaign will be divided equally among the participating senior dog rescue organizations. The remaining twentyfive percent of the funds will go into the Saving Senior Dogs grant fund to provide veterinary care and dog supplies for new 501(c)3 senior dog rescues. 100% of the funds will go towards saving thousands of homeless senior dogs.

Current partnering Saving Senior Dog Week rescue organizations include: Albert’s Dog Lounge Dog Rescue – Wisconsin; Daisy Lu – Southern California; Dog Lodge – Texas;  Forever Dream Senior Dog

Sanctuary – North Carolina; Forever Loved Pet Sanctuary – Arizona; Frosted Faces Foundation – Southern California; Gray Face Acres Senior Dog Rescue – Maryland; Grand-Paws Senior Sanctuary – Southern California; Gray Paws Sanctuary – Pennsylvania; Homer J’s Senior Dog Sanctuary – Nevada; Lily’s Legacy Senior Dog Sanctuary – Northern California; Lionel’s Legacy – Southern California; Marty’s Place Senior Dog Sanctuary – New Jersey; Muttville – Northern California; Old Friends Senior Dog Sanctuary – Tennessee; Peace of Mind Dog Rescue – Northern California; The Roland Senior Dog Rescue Gang – Florida; Senior Dog Haven & Hospice – Delaware; Senior Dog Sanctuary – Maryland; Senior Paws Rescue – Indiana; Tails of Gray – Northern California; Top Dog Foundation – Minnesota; Vintage Paws Rescue – Florida; Vintage Pet Rescue – Rhode Island; Whispering Willows Senior Dog Sanctuary – Missouri.

Special thanks to the 2021 Saving Senior Dogs Week Sponsors:  Jonathan and Germaine Heiliger, Canna-Pet, Healthypaws Pet Insurance & Foundation, Subaru Marin, Zoetis, Mezzetta Family Company, Fairfax Veterinary Clinic, Radio Pet Lady Network and New York Dog Film Festival.

ABOUT MARTY’S PLACE SENIOR DOG SANCTUARY

Inspired by a senior dog adoptee named Marty and the plight of other aging canines with nowhere to safely and comfortably live out their “golden” years, Marty’s Place Senior Dog Sanctuary was founded in 2015. The 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization provides a permanent and protected environment for dogs aged seven and older when their owners or other animal rescue/shelters can no longer care for them.

While adoption may be an option for some residents, when it is not, Marty’s Place provides senior dogs a loving home for life in a cage-free, family-like environment with full, personalized attention given to their needs for the rest of their lives.

Situated on 25 acres, the 8,000-square-foot facility in Upper Freehold, N.J., also offers a swim program for its residents and non-resident dogs of all ages in its indoor, saltwater pool.  

For more information visit:  www.martysplace.org or call 609-259-1278.


Opinion: Mercer County To Spend $1.88 Million Replacing Abandoned Railroad “Bridge To Nowhere”

October 19, 2021

Opinion:

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Mercer County sent a press release this morning informing us that Parkside Avenue in the City of Trenton will be closed for approximately 5 months for a replacement of a “bridge carrying an abandoned railroad trail” This abandoned “trail” is blocked off on several sections and has signs saying “No Trespassing” and that the property is owned by CSX Transportation, Inc. This “trail” runs Parallel to Oakland Street and Homan Avenue. A quick Google measurement shows that the current worn foot path or “trail” runs just less than a 1/2 mile from Maple Avenue in a southerly direction ending approximately at Edgemere Avenue. On the north end at Hillcrest the railroad right of way is gone and houses have been built over it so there could be no expansion for a “rail to trail” for the neighborhood north into Ewing Township. In the southerly direction the right of way is less clear since it appears that others have built over it, paved sections for parking lots or fenced the right of way. There appear to be no CSX signs south of Ellsworth Avenue.

Multiple fences and signage in the area of Hoffman Avenue indicate that this “trail” is indeed on private property and users are currently trespassing by going around the fences. This area is known to some of the most serious gun violence and shooting deaths in the City of Trenton the past few years. A visit to the site and “trail” today showed the area covered with trash, empty beer and liquor bottles, needles and used condoms strewn about the area.

According to the press release a $1,885,277.00 bid was awarded at the Mercer County Board of Commissioners meeting on October 7.

In our opinion this is a “Bridge To Nowhere” because the current “trail” is illegal because it is currently on private property and clearly marked “No Trespassing” Instead of a bridge replacement the County should perform a bridge removal at a lower cost to the taxpayers. If indeed one day the City or County does acquire the property for a trail a lower cost pedestrian type bridge could be used similar to many used in County and State Parks for foot traffic. I can think of a lot better projects that Mercer County could have spent $1.88+ Million Dollars on that would have done a lot of good for the County.


Mercer County Press Release 10/19/2021

The Mercer County Department of Transportation and Infrastructure will start the replacement of the bridge carrying an abandoned railroad trail over Parkside Avenue in the City of Trenton on Monday, Nov. 1, 2021. It is one of 17 County bridge projects in progress, including those in the design stage, according to County Executive Brian M. Hughes.

Officially known as Bridge #180.1, the structure is located between Oak Lane and Oakland Street. This project is to be completed in 150 calendar days, weather permitting.

During construction, Parkside Avenue between Oak Lane and Oakland Street will be closed to vehicular traffic on a 24/7 basis. Pedestrians will be provided a safe passage through the site during construction. A detour will be posted directing motorists to West State Street to Sullivan Way to Lower Ferry Road and Parkway Avenue, ending on Parkside Avenue.

The existing bridge carrying an abandoned railroad trail over Parkside Avenue is a concrete-encased steel girder bridge. The structure is in poor condition, extremely deteriorated and poses a hazard due to the potential of falling concrete debris.

The replacement bridge will be a single-span structure supported on full-height concrete abutments. The superstructure will consist of precast prestressed beams with a composite reinforced concrete deck. The substructure will be full-height reinforced concrete abutments founded on cast-in-place spread footings. The proposed structure was designed to identically match the aesthetics of the existing structure while being upgraded to meet current New Jersey Department of Transportation standards.

The successful bidder for the project was Rencor Inc. of Somerville, which submitted a bid price of $1,885,277. Rencor Inc. has successfully completed similar projects in Mercer County and provided the lowest bid price for this project. The contract was approved by the Mercer County Board of Commissioners on Oct. 7.



Ocean State Job Lot Opens New Store in Freehold, NJ

Discount Retailer Opens 6th New Jersey Store in Former Toys”R”Us Location

October 19, 2021

FREEHOLD, NJ (MONMOUTH)–Ocean State Job Lot (OSJL), the region’s premier discount retail chain with store locations across the Northeast, is pleased to announce the opening today of its 147th store, its sixth in New Jersey, at 600 Trotters Way, Freehold. The store is across from the Freehold Raceway Mall and is the 11th Toys“R”Us OSJL has purchased and opened since 2017.

This 44,784 sq. ft. location restores vibrancy to the formerly vacant retail space. Nearly 50 full- and part-time associates have been hired for the store, which will offer customers a big, bright shopping space. “We’re looking forward to sharing Ocean State Job Lot’s unique shopping experience with our new neighbors in Freehold,” said Jeff Greene, Store Team Leader, Ocean State Job Lot. “From seasonal items and home essentials, including fall lawn clean-up supplies, to pantry staples, paper goods, holiday wrapping, and a wide array of cleaning products, Ocean State Job Lot offers unbeatable prices and selection.”

As part of its Three Square Meals program, the Ocean State Job Lot Charitable Foundation (OSJLCF) will make a donation of non-perishable food items to Fulfill, the FoodBank of Monmouth and Ocean Counties. In addition, a pallet of food will be donated to Freehold Open Door Food Pantry as part of the OSJLCF’s Pallets to Pantries program. Lastly, a $500 OSJL gift card will be provided to Freehold’s All Fur Love Animal Rescue, a donation made possible through the OSJLCF’s To The Rescue initiative to aid animal welfare organizations.

Shoppers throughout New England, New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania know Ocean State Job Lot for its Crazy Deals, Insider Club, fantastic prices, friendly customer service, and wide range of merchandise.

Ocean State Job Lot has made its mark in the discount-retail segment through opportunistic buying, which allows it to offer a wide selection of first-quality name brands and closeout merchandise at unbelievable prices. Shoppers find an ever-changing array of household goods, apparel, pet supplies, seasonal products (such as holiday, lawn and garden supplies, heating and cooling), kitchen pantry staples and a broad offering of gourmet and international specialty foods.

Store hours are currently 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. every day.


Aggravated Sexual Assault Suspect Being Sought; Similar Incident In Duke Island Park, Bridgewater

October 19, 2021

PLAINSBORO-SOUTH BRUNSWICK, NJ (MIDDLESEX)–Middlesex County Prosecutor Yolanda Ciccone, Chief Fred Tavener of the Plainsboro Police Department, and Chief Raymond Hayducka of the South Brunswick Police Department announce authorities are seeking the public’s assistance in identifying an individual believed to be involved in an aggravated sexual assault that occurred in the area of Delaware and Raritan Canal State Park on the border of Plainsboro and South Brunswick Townships.

A joint investigation has determined that on September 28, 2021 between 4:30 P.M. and 5:00 P.M., an adult woman was walking on a path adjacent to the canal where she was approached by a male armed with a weapon and moved to a secondary location on the Plainsboro-South Brunswick border where she was sexually assaulted.

The suspect is described as a Hispanic male, age range of 40’s-50’s, approximately 5’5” – 5’6” tall, wearing dark colored clothing and a dark baseball cap. The individual is believed to have been riding a bike.

This incident has similarities to a sexual assault that occurred in Duke Island Park in Bridgewater Township, Somerset County on Sunday evening, July 18, 2021.


Hamilton Township Council to Vote on Demolition of East State Street Properties Damaged in 2015, 6-Alarm Fire

October 19, 2021

HAMILTON TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–The Hamilton Township Council is set to vote on the demolition of East State Street properties damaged in a 2015 six-alarm fire. 

If approved by Council at their meeting on Tuesday, seven of the eight condemned properties damaged in the fire that tore through the 1700 block of East State Street, displacing dozens of residents, will be demolished. A private developer purchased the eighth property prior to the acquisition of the other vacant properties in 2021 by the Township. 

When stepping into office, Mayor Martin promised to address the vacant and abandoned properties within the Township. By acquiring the East State Street properties, the Township will look to convert the vacant properties to affordable housing units.  

“For six years, the residents of Hamilton have been reminded of the awful fire that took place in 2015,” stated Mayor Jeff Martin. “Moving to tear down the vacant buildings and convert the properties into new affordable housing is the right thing to do after all of this time. We have more work to do on many other vacant and abandoned properties, but this is a great place to start.”

The Hamilton Township Council will meet this evening at 6:30 pm at the Hamilton Township Senior Center located at 409 Cypress Lane. 






Mentioned at a June 16, 2020 Black Lives Matter Protest in Hamilton:


“I am going to mention one more thing about the Bromley Section of the city. We know that structure racism exists, houses burned down in the Bromley Section almost 5 years ago, those houses are still sitting there, that would happen in no other neighborhood in Hamilton but Bromley. That has to change. That’s racism. That’s separation. That’s underclass and we must speak up against that. We have some action items that we are going to demand Hamilton and Mercer County hold to before this is over.” –Black Lives Matter protester Tracey D. Syphax


Mentioned at the Black Lives Matter Protest in Hamilton Township, June 16, 2020:

7 minutes 25 seconds in this video you can hear the statement about the fire 5 years ago in the Bromley Section:


Jackson Firefighters Extinguish House Fire

October 19, 2021

JACKSON TOWNSHIP, NJ (OCEAN)–Jackson Township Police and Jackson Township Fire Departments responded to the 400 Block of 4th Street for a house fire around 11:12 p.m. Upon arrival of police it was reported heavy smoke coming from a manufactured home. The fire department arrived and extinguished the fire. The fire appeared to be a couch on fire that was inside the home. No further information or official cause of the fire.