Day: October 20, 2021

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.