Month: July 2022

Bordentown, NJ Woman Sentenced To, One Year And A Day, In Prison For GoFundMe Scam

July 21, 2022

CAMDEN, N.J. – A Burlington County, New Jersey, woman was sentenced today to one year and one day in prison for her role in a GoFundMe scam that gained nationwide attention, U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger announced.

Katelyn McClure, 32, of Bordentown, New Jersey, previously pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Jerome B. Simandle to an information charging her with one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud. U.S. District Judge Noel L. Hillman imposed the sentence today in Camden federal court.

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

In November 2017, McClure and Mark D’Amico, 43, allegedly created a crowd-source funding page on GoFundMe’s website titled “Paying It Forward.” The campaign solicited donations from the public purportedly for the benefit of a homeless veteran, Johnny Bobbitt, 39, of Philadelphia. McClure and D’Amico posted a story that McClure was driving home from Philadelphia on Interstate 95 and ran out of gas. Bobbitt acted as a “good Samaritan” and rescued McClure by using his last $20 to buy gasoline for her. The website stated that funds were being solicited to get Bobbitt off the streets and provide him with living expenses, setting a goal of $10,000.

In reality, McClure never ran out of gas and Bobbitt never spent his last $20 for her. D’Amico and McClure allegedly conspired to create the false story to obtain money from donors. The story was quickly picked up by local and national media outlets and went viral and raised approximately $400,000 from more than 14,000 donors in less than three weeks.

The donated funds were transferred by D’Amico and McClure from GoFundMe into accounts that they controlled. The majority of the money allegedly was quickly spent by D’Amico and McClure on personal expenses over the next three months.

In mid-November of 2017, when the donations had reached approximately $1,500, D’Amico and McClure told Bobbitt about the campaign and the false gas story. In December of 2017, after setting up a bank account for Bobbitt, D’Amico and McClure deposited $25,000 of proceeds of the scheme into Bobbitt’s account.

In addition to the prison term, Judge Hillman sentenced McClure to three years of supervised release and ordered her to pay $400,000 in restitution. D’Amico previously pleaded guilty and was sentenced in April 2022 to 27 months in prison; Bobbitt pleaded guilty and is awaiting sentencing.

U.S. Attorney Sellinger credited assistant prosecutors and detectives of the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office, under the direction of Prosecutor Lachia L. Bradshaw; officers of the Florence Township Police Department; special agents of IRS-Criminal Investigation, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Tammy Tomlins; and special agents of the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge James E. Dennehy in Newark, with the investigation leading to today’s sentencing.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeffrey Bender of the Criminal Division in Camden.

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Defense counsel: James J. Gerrow Jr. Esq., Hainesport, New Jersey


Related story:


New NJ Law Requires All Law Enforcement Officers To Hold A Valid License By Police Training Commission

Officers will be subject to renew their licenses three years after issuance.

July 21, 2022

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Governor Phil Murphy today signed S2742/A4194 into law, establishing a police licensing program for all New Jersey law enforcement officers. The new law will require all law enforcement officers to hold a valid, active license issued by the Police Training Commission (PTC) in order to be employed as officers in the State of New Jersey. Governor Murphy first proposed the legislation in May 2022 and the bill quickly moved through both the Senate and Assembly. New Jersey will become the 47th state to establish a police licensing program.

“I thank my legislative partners for acting quickly on passing this bill and sending it to my desk to sign today. This police licensing program will, formally and finally, recognize all who serve in law enforcement in our state as the specially trained and highly skilled professional they are,” said Governor Murphy. “Officers holding these licenses will be proven professionals who fulfill their duties with honesty and integrity, helping law enforcement strengthen and rebuild the bonds of trust between police and residents in the communities they serve, especially in our Black and Brown communities.”

“This landmark legislation will have real and transformative impact on policing in New Jersey, and will serve to significantly improve trust between law enforcement and the public they are sworn to protect,” said Acting Attorney General Platkin. “One of the strongest commitments of the Murphy Administration has been to ensure the continued excellence and success of New Jersey’s law enforcement officers, while promoting a culture statewide of professionalism, transparency, and accountability.” 

“The licensing of law enforcement officers throughout New Jersey provides an additional layer of professionalism and accountability to the men and women who take an oath to serve and protect the citizens of this great state,” said Colonel Patrick J. Callahan, Superintendent of the New Jersey State Police. “I applaud the efforts of Governor Murphy and Acting Attorney General Platkin who have worked tirelessly with the members of the Police Training Commission to enact a statewide licensing program that strengthens transparency and public trust.”

“NJDOC correctional police are highly trained and dedicated professionals with the significant responsibility of protecting the public and ensuring safe and secure facilities” said NJDOC Commissioner Victoria L. Kuhn. “The statewide licensure of law enforcement will continue to build trust and improve accountability for officers that serve in the NJDOC, and each and every community across the state.”

The PTC, which establishes statewide law enforcement standards, voted unanimously in June 2020 to create a statewide police licensing program, recognizing that over 40 states across the country use a form of decertification or licensing for law enforcement officers. In an effort to help build public trust in law enforcement, the police licensing program will require all law enforcement officers to meet certain uniform professional standards to become, or continue to be, an active law enforcement officer in the state. 

To better protect the health, safety, and welfare of all citizens, the legislation would grant the PTC the ability and responsibility to monitor and take appropriate actions against the licenses of any law enforcement officer who acts outside the bounds of professional standards or engages in illegal or improper conduct. Some of the conduct resulting in the revocation or non-issuance of a license include:

  • Conviction of any crime in NJ, or any other state, territory, country, or of the U.S.;
  • Conviction of an act of domestic violence;
  • Conviction of any offense that would preclude an officer from carrying a firearm;
  • Two or more motor vehicle offenses for operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or two of more motor vehicle offenses for reckless driving;
  • Being an active member of a group that advocates for the violent overthrow of the government or for discrimination based on classes protected by the Law Against Discrimination (LAD); and
  • Conduct or behavior in the officer’s personal or professional life such as making statements, posting, sharing, or commenting in support of any posting, on social media, or otherwise, that demonstrates, espouses, advocates or supports discrimination or violence against, or hatred or bias toward individuals or groups based on race, creed, color, national origin, ancestry, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other protected characteristic under the “Law Against Discrimination.”

Officers will be subject to renew their licenses three years after issuance.

Watch video at link below:

https://www.facebook.com/governorphilmurphy/videos/763388991469149/

Photos NJ Govenor’s Office


Primary sponsors of the legislation include:

  • Senator Linda Greenstein
  • Senator Troy Singleton
  • Assemblywoman Verlina Reynolds-Jackson
  • Assemblyman Benjie E. Wimberly
  • Assemblyman William W. Spearman 

“We have taken major steps over recent years – requiring the use of body-worn cameras, enhancing training, and increasing the diversity of our law enforcement agencies – to fortify the relationships between our communities and the law enforcement agencies that serve them. Police licensure is a commonsense next step,” said Senator Greenstein. “Our communities will be better served – and our law enforcement agencies will be better equipped – with a framework for licensure in place. I’d like to thank my colleagues for supporting this legislation and Governor Murphy for signing it into law.”

“The creation and implementation of a statewide licensure program for law enforcement officers is essential, as it will set requirements and minimum standards for all police at all levels,” said Senator Troy Singleton. “I truly believe that uniform professional standards will help build public trust and ensure that proper policing is occurring across New Jersey.”

“Professional licensure will greatly help ensure law enforcement officers uphold the public trust by maintaining high standards of training and proficiency,” said Assemblywoman Reynolds-Jackson.  “Many professions require licensure and are held accountable if they are in violation. The job of law enforcement is as critically important to our communities as the work of doctors and lawyers. This law will raise the level of professionalism that is required to serve our communities in any situation.”

“We should always work to enhance transparency and build better relationships between the police and the residents they protect,” said Assemblyman Bill Spearman. “Through this law, we will be able to hold bad actors accountable for their wrongdoings and ensure that the proper disciplinary actions are pursued.”  

“The Police Training Commission will have the ability to better monitor officers and take the appropriate action against those who engage in improper conduct under established licensure standards,” said Assemblyman Benjie Wimberly. “This law is a step toward rebuilding trust in our communities.” 

“The State Troopers Fraternal Association has continually been willing to partner with the Governor and members of the legislature in producing common sense police reform legislation. This historic legislation creating a police licensing program here in New Jersey is no exception.  This is yet another piece of legislation that we have all worked on together to enhance transparency and promote public trust and confidence in our troopers and all law-enforcement.  This bill enhances the concepts of producing a more professional and better trained police officer while incapacitating bad actors for which we have no tolerance,” said Wayne Blanchard, President, State Troopers Fraternal Association.

“The New Jersey Fraternal Order of Police which represents over 14,000 of New Jersey’s Finest supports Governor Murphy’s initiatives to further enhance professionalism within the Law Enforcement community in the State of New Jersey,” said Robert Gries, Executive Vice President, NJFOP. “We look forward to supporting and working with the Governor’s Office on this and all matters that affect and improve the ability of Law Enforcement to perform their important work.” 

“The ACLU-NJ and our advocacy partners have been calling for police licensing for years, and we’re proud that we’re finally able to see it come to fruition,” said ACLU-NJ President Amol Sinha. “The bill Governor Murphy signed is strong: both the bill’s sponsors and the administration took a promising draft and improved it by mandating reporting to the National Decertification Index. We intend to continue working with the Attorney General and stakeholders to ensure that this new licensing scheme provides necessary accountability and transparency for all New Jerseyans as well as ensures due process and fairness mechanisms for members of law enforcement. But there is much more that remains to be done. New Jersey belatedly joins the more than 40 other states in having a licensing scheme for police officers. We must now do the hard work of delivering meaningful measures of accountability such as police discipline transparency, civilian complaint review boards with subpoena power, and ending qualified immunity. We cannot – and should not – aspire to merely catch up with states like Alabama and Florida – instead we must lead on issues of police accountability to create a fairer and more just New Jersey for all.” 

“We applaud Governor Murphy and Attorney General Platkin for their leadership in establishing a police licensure program in New Jersey,” said Reverend Charles Boyer, Pastor, Greater Mount Zion Bethel AME Church and Executive Director, Salvation & Social Justice, United Black Agenda. “Black residents in New Jersey are three times as likely to have force used against them than their white counterparts, and excessive force claims continue to cost New Jersey taxpayers millions each year. This bill is both critical and long overdue, yet we acknowledge that this legislation is not a panacea. We still have much work to do to ensure that this bill lives up to the state’s promise to heighten the standard of police conduct in the state and effectively holding officers who fail to meet that standard accountable. We at Salvation and Social Justice look forward to continuing to work with this Administration to increase transparency, equity, and justice in this state.”

“I know that most New Jersey residents will be proud to join forty-six (46) states in these United States to require Law Enforcement Officers to be licensed like the many professionals in their communities,” said Reva Foster President, NJ Black Issues Convention

Professional licensing is used in various other contexts, and occupations such as teachers, doctors, electricians, and counselors, among others, are subject to licensing requirements that provide the public with appropriate assurance of professionalism, qualification, and accountability.


Photos NJ Govenor’s Office


74-Year-Old Freehold Township Man Found Guilty Of Possession And Distribution Of Child Sexual Abuse Materials

July 21, 2022

FREEHOLD, NJ (MONMOUTH) – A Freehold Township man was found guilty by a Monmouth County Jury in connection with the 2017 possession and distribution of child sexual abuse materials, Acting Monmouth County Prosecutor Lori Linskey announced Thursday.

James Simmons, 74, of Freehold Township, was convicted on Wednesday, July 20, 2022, of second degree Endangering the Welfare of a Child, Distribution of Child Sexual Abuse Material and third degree Endangering the Welfare of a Child, Possession of Child Sexual Abuse Material.

A July 2017 investigation by the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office, along with NJ ICAC Task Force and the Freehold Township Police Department revealed that Simmons was found to be in a possession of a USB thumb drive with over 100 videos depicting the sexual abuse of a child, along with peer-to-peer file sharing programs from electronic devices located at his residence on Harding Road in Freehold Township. The New Jersey Regional Computer Forensic Laboratory assisted in the analysis of the electronic devices recovered from the defendant’s residence.

“I am grateful for the collaborative investigative efforts of my office’s detectives, Assistant Prosecutor Dugan, the NJ ICAC Task Force, and the Freehold Township Police Department for their work on this case.  It is imperative that we continue to do all that we can to protect our most vulnerable citizens, our children, from being victimized in this way,” said Acting Prosecutor Lori Linskey.

During the trial, Simmons testified that the materials and files found belonged to his son, who had died prior to Simmons’ arrest.

Simmons faces more than 10 years in a New Jersey State Prison. Simmons must also register for Megan’s Law, he will be under Parole Supervision for Life and will have Internet Restrictions when he is sentenced by Monmouth County Superior Court Judge Jill O’Malley on January 13, 2023.

This case is being handled by Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutor Stephanie Dugan. Simmons is being represented by George B. Somers Jr., Esq., of Princeton.



Somerset County Man Gets 46-Months In Prison For $2M COVID-19 Fraud Scheme

July 21, 2022

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–A Somerset County, New Jersey, man was sentenced to 46 months in prison for orchestrating a $2 million COVID-19 fraud scheme, U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger announced today.

Guaravjit “Raj” Singh, 27, of Montgomery, New Jersey, previously pleaded guilty before U.S. District Court Judge Peter G. Sheridan to an information charging him with one count of wire fraud. Judge Sheridan imposed the sentence on July 20, 2022, in Trenton federal court.

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

From May 2020, in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, Singh engaged in a scheme to defraud and to enrich himself by fraudulently inducing 10 victims to send him over $2 million to obtain personal protective equipment (PPE) and then stealing the money and not providing the PPE to the victims as promised.

Singh induced victims to enter into an agreement pursuant to which Singh would be paid approximately $7.1 million for approximately 1.5 million medical gowns, which ultimately were to be sourced to the city of New York amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The victims wired Singh, though his company GJS Solutions LLC, $712,500, representing a 10 percent initial deposit for the medical gowns. After receiving these funds from the victims, Singh made additional misrepresentations and excuses to the victims, ensuring them that they would receive the medical gowns. Instead of purchasing and delivering medical gowns, Singh used the funds for personal expenses.

In addition to the prison term, Judge Sheridan sentenced Singh to three years of supervised release.

U.S. Attorney Sellinger credited special agents and intelligence analysts of the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge James E. Dennehy in Newark, with the investigation leading to the sentencing.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Lauren E. Repole, Chief of the General Crimes Unit in Newark.

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Defense counsel: Todd A. Spodek Esq., New York



Burlington County Man Sentenced To 10-Years In Prison For Role In Drug Trafficking Organization

July 21, 2022

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–A Burlington County, New Jersey, man was sentenced to 120 months in prison for conspiring to distribute large amounts of cocaine and crack cocaine throughout Burlington County, U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger announced today.

Herbert Mays, 65, of Willingboro, New Jersey, previously pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Zahid N. Quraishi to a superseding indictment charging him with conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute more than five kilograms of cocaine and conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute more than 280 grams of crack cocaine. Judge Quraishi imposed the sentence on July 20, 2022, in Trenton federal court.

Eighteen other members of the drug trafficking conspiracy have pleaded guilty. The charges against two other defendants remain pending; the charges against them are merely accusations, and they are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

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

Between July 2019 and September 2019, Mays, his codefendants and others engaged in a narcotics conspiracy that operated primarily in municipalities throughout Burlington County – including Willingboro, Burlington City, Burlington Township, Bordentown Township, and Edgewater Park – and which sought to profit from the distribution of cocaine and crack cocaine. Law enforcement officials learned that defendants obtained regular supplies of cocaine from co-conspirators in the Philadelphia area and elsewhere and then redistributed that cocaine, portions of which defendants converted into crack cocaine, for profit, to other conspirators, distributors, sub-dealers, and end users throughout Burlington County and elsewhere. Law enforcement officials intercepted numerous communications by and between the conspirators regarding such issues as cocaine and crack cocaine quality and availability, pricing, packaging, quantity, and customer satisfaction.

In addition to the prison term, Judge Quraishi sentenced Mays to five years of supervised release.

U.S. Attorney Sellinger credited special agents of the FBI, Trenton Resident Agency, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge James E. Dennehy in Newark; special agents of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Newark Field Division, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Jeffrey L. Matthews; detectives of the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office, under the direction of Burlington County Prosecutor Lachia L. Bradshaw; officers of the Burlington Township Police Department, under the direction of Director of Public Safety Bruce Painter; officers of the Willingboro Police Department, under the direction of Acting Director of Public Safety Ian Bucs; officers of the Burlington City Police Department, under the direction of Chief of Police John Fine; officers of the Florence Police Department, under the direction of Chief of Police Brian Boldizar; officers of the Bordentown Township Police Department, under the direction of Chief of Police Brian Pesce; officers of the Edgewater Park Police Department, under the direction of Chief of Police Brett V. Evans; officers of the Ewing Police Department, under the direction of Chief of Police Albert Rhodes; officers of the Westampton Police Department, under the direction of Chief of Police Stephen Ent; officers of the Trenton Police Department, under the direction of Director Steve Wilson with the investigation leading to the sentencing.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Martha K. Nye of the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s Criminal Division in Trenton and Andrew B. Johns of the Criminal Division in Camden.

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Defense counsel: Scott Krasny Esq., Trenton


7 Arrested On Prostitution – John Charges, In Trenton, NJ

July 21, 2022

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Trenton Police Department reports that Task Force Units conduct high visibility Preventive Patrols focusing on the “quality-of-life” offenses as well as open-air street-level narcotics offenses. The Task Force Officers conducted a prostitution/john detail in the areas of South Broad Street and Malone Street, and South Clinton Avenue and Bayard Street.

Trenton Police Task Force Units made the following Arrests:

1.) Randal Hernandez, Trenton NJ

2.) Dominic Brown, Trenton NJ

3.) Julia Hernandez, Trenton NJ

4.) Jamie Pinder, Trenton NJ

5.) Amy Exner, Trenton NJ

6.) Renee Rosina, Trenton NJ

7.) Tracey Rhodes, Trenton NJ

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.




Monroe Township Man Indicted For Murder And Endangering The Welfare Of A Child

July 20, 2022

BARNEGAT TOWNSHIP, NJ (OCEAN)–Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley D. Billhimer announced that on July 19, 2022, Christopher Gregor, 30, of Monroe Township, was indicted by a Grand Jury sitting in Ocean County on the charge of Murder in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:11-3a(1), in connection with the death of a six-year-old male on April 2, 2021, at Southern Ocean Medical Center in the Manahawkin section of Stafford Township. Gregor was also indicted on the charge of Endangering the Welfare of a Child in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:24-4a(2), in connection with events that occurred on March 20, 2021 in Barnegat Township.

On April 2, 2021, Officers from the Stafford Township Police Department responded to Southern Ocean Medical Center in reference to the death of a six-year-old male, identified as C.M. On April 3, 2021, a post-mortem examination was performed by the Ocean County Medical Examiner’s Office, and it was determined that C.M. sustained injuries due to blunt force trauma. In the course of investigating the child’s death, Detectives from the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crime Unit, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office High Tech Crime Squad, and Barnegat Township Police Department, discovered evidence that revealed that Gregor had committed acts of abuse against the child in Barnegat Township on March 20, 2021. Accordingly, Gregor was charged with Endangering the Welfare of a Child in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:24-4a(2), on July 7, 2021. Though initially lodged in the Ocean County Jail, Gregor was subsequently released as a consequence of New Jersey Bail Reform.

On March 3, 2022, the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office received a report from the State’s expert witness that indicated that C.M. died as a result of blunt force impact to the chest and abdomen, and determined the manner of the child’s death to be homicide. An extensive investigation conducted by the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crime Unit, Barnegat Township Police Department, and Ocean County Sheriff’s Office Crime Scene Investigation Unit, revealed that C.M. was in the custody of Gregor at the time he sustained his life-ending injuries, and that Gregor was the individual responsible for the child’s death.

On March 9, 2022, Gregor was taken into custody by Detectives from the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Narcotics Strike Force, Sea Bright Police Department, and Barnegat Township Police Department. Gregor has been lodged in the Ocean County Jail since the date of his apprehension.

Prosecutor Billhimer acknowledges the diligent efforts of Supervising Assistant Prosecutor Christine Lento who presented the case to the Grand Jury on behalf of the State, and commends the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crime Unit, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Special Victim’s Unit, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office High Tech Crime Unit, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Economic Crimes Unit, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Narcotics Strike Force, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Victim Witness Advocacy Unit, Ocean County Sheriff’s Office, Ocean County Sheriff’s Office Crime Scene Investigation Unit, Barnegat Township Police Department, Stafford Township Police Department, Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office, Englishtown Police Department, Manalapan Township Police Department, Monroe Township Police Department, Sea Bright Police Department, New Jersey State Police, and Alcoa (Tennessee) Police Department, for their collective and cooperative assistance in connection with this investigation leading to Gregor’s apprehension and now his indictment.

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).



Firefighters Battle 3 Alarm Fire During Heat Wave In Trenton, NJ

Weather Underground reported a high of 97F during firefighting operations.

July 20, 2022

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–According to Trenton Police Detective Lieutenant Bethesda Stokes around 12:30 p.m., the radio room received two 9-1-1 calls reporting a fire at 365 Cleveland Avenue. A good Samaritan, Mr. James Page, who happened to be doing work on a house in the area, saw smoke coming out of the house, then ran into the house and got everyone out of the house. Three firefighters were injured in the firefight, one Trenton firefighter had something collapse on him but was not seriously injured. Two other firefighters had smoke inhalation, one from Trenton Fire Department and one from Hamilton Township Fire Department. The fire went to 3 alarms before being brought under control. The interior of the house was completely gutted. Police say the fire was not suspicious in nature. 

Multiple fire departments responded to the scene or covered the City or Trenton. Firefighters battled the 3 alarm fire in temperatures in the high 90s. Signal 22 Canteen Unit helped provide refreshment to the firefighters. Princeton First Aid and Rescue Squad responded with the rehab unit due to the high temperatures.



Trenton Police Arrest Man With Stolen Handgun, 52 Decks Of Heroin, and $682 In Suspected Drug Proceeds

July 20, 2022

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Trenton Police report that on June 18, 2002, TPD Violent Crimes Unit detectives responded to the area of Hamilton and Hudson Streets to investigate a man wearing a body satchel in possession of a gun. Upon their arrival, they observed Henry Hutchinson, 37, matching the clothing description and wearing a cross-body satchel standing by the store. As detectives approached Hutchinson, he quickly fled on foot leading Detectives Lukas Kulis and Gianni Zappley on a foot pursuit. He was apprehended and arrested for obstructing the administration of law. A search revealed a loaded stolen Smith & Wesson .38 caliber revolver loaded with three rounds of hollow point ammunition, 52 decks of heroin, and $682.00 US currency that was confiscated as suspected drug proceeds.

All arrestees/suspects are presumed innocent until proven guilty in the court of law.



Tuckerton Fire Company No. 1, Out Of Service 44 Days; Asks NJ Attorney General To Investigate

July 20, 2022

TUCKERTON, NJ (OCEAN)–The Tuckerton Fire Department has been out of service to the community Since June 6, 2022, 44 days when equipment was removed and the Tuckerton Borough Council voted to pass a resolution “Suspending Emergency Service From The Tuckerton Volunteer Fire Company No. 1 For The Borough Of Tuckerton And Providing For Alternative Emergency Service Coverage.”

On July 18, 2022 the Fire Company sent a letter to the NJ Attorney General’s Office to investigate several allegations of misconduct. That letter in its entirety is posted below with a link to the Fire Department’s Facebook page.

“DAY 44 – OUT OF SERVICE We are asking the New Jersey Attorney General to look into a few things that we feel are improper or illegal.”Tuckerton Fire Department Facebook page.






Round Valley Reservoir Project Seeks Permanent Closure Of CR-629 Due To “Security Concerns”

July 19, 2022

CLINTON TOWNSHIP, NJ (HUNTERDON)–According to the Clinton Township website discussions are underway to close County Road 629 permanently in the area of the Round Valley Reservoir by the request of the New Jersey Water Supply Authority due to security concerns of “bad actors”

From the Clinton Township website:

As you probably already know, County Road 629 in Clinton Township, Hunterdon County has been closed since April 8, 2020, from the corner of Cherry Street and Old Mountain Road to just east of the driveway to the NJDEP “fishlabs”. The fish labs are located just east of the parking lot access to the Round Valley Fish and Wildlife Boat Ramp. This was originally proposed as a temporary closure during the construction project on the Round Valley embankments. This temporary closing was allowed by Hunterdon County Engineering at the request of the New Jersey Water Supply Authority.

Recently, the Authority has had informal conversations with the Hunterdon County Engineering Department, the Borough of Lebanon, and Clinton Township about making the existing temporary closure of County Road 629 permanent. Following our informal discussions, a specific request to close the road permanently has been asked of the mayors of Lebanon Borough and Clinton Township in advance of a formal similar request to Hunterdon County. If the closing is allowed, it is our intent, after all construction is complete, to continue to allow public access on the road for pedestrians and bicycles only. Keys to the vehicular access gates would be provided to Lebanon Borough, Clinton Township, and Hunterdon County emergency staff for vehicular access. This is not out of the ordinary as keys have already been provided to the same emergency services groups for to access other Authority-owned secure areas.

The purpose of this change is to improve dam safety. We cannot share specifics, but I can tell you that a very serious threat to earthen dams by bad actors would be facilitated by vehicular access to the structure. County Road 629 is the crest of the Round Valley Dike. Be aware that failure of any of the three Round Valley dams would have catastrophic impacts on downstream residents and water supply to over one million people in central New Jersey.

It is also noted that the Authority has received verbal support of this proposal from New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection’s Bureau of Dam Safety. The Round Valley Dike is the only one of the three embankments (at Round Valley) with unrestricted vehicular access to the crest. To my knowledge, there are no earthen embankments of this size in the state of New Jersey that allows public vehicular access.

I hope this helps you understand the situation. We do plan to add this information along with updates to our website in the future. The link to our project-specific webpage follows.


According to the website:

The Round Valley reservoir was formed in the 1960s in the Township of Clinton, New Jersey after the State constructed three large earthen embankments and flooded a large valley. The reservoir was named after the ring shaped Cushetunk Mountain that surrounds the area.

While the large valley was caused by the erosion of soft sedimentary rock, the surrounding mountain ridges endured due to the dense and durable underlay of volcanic rock.

Reaching depths of 180 feet, this 2,350-acre reservoir is known for its clear blue waters. At full capacity, the reservoir contains 55 billion gallons of water for use in central New Jersey, making it the largest water supply reservoir by volume in the state. Its water is primarily released to the nearby South Branch of the Rockaway Creek, which feeds the North Branch of the Raritan River.

The Round Valley reservoir is an “off-stream pump storage” reservoir, which means that it is filled primarily by pumping water into it. The New Jersey Water Supply Authority operates a pumping station in the Hamden section of Clinton Township to move water from the South Branch of the Raritan River into the reservoir via a large underground pipeline. Round Valley reservoir is part of a larger water supply system supply called the Raritan Basin system, which also includes the Spruce Run Reservoir. Additional information about the Raritan Basin system can be found on the Authority’s website.

Round Valley reservoir was designed for water supply purposes, but is also managed for recreational activities such as fishing, boating, hiking, swimming and camping. The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection’s (NJDEP) Division of Fish and Wildlife manages the fishery and game resources at Round Valley Reservoir and the NJDEP State Park Service manages the other recreational aspects of the reservoir.


Unidentified Male Recovered From Delaware River In Ewing Township

July 19, 2022

EWING TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–According to New Jersey State Park Police (NJDEP), the body of an unidentified man was recovered from the Delaware River on Monday, July 18, 2022, in the vicinity of the D&R Canal State Park and Scudders Fall Bridge in Ewing Township. The New Jersey State Parks Police is leading the investigation. Agencies assisting in the search and recovery efforts included Hopewell Township Police Department, the Upper Makefield Police Department (Pennsylvania), and the State Police Marine Unit. Identification of the victim is pending confirmation.

Numerous fire departments from NJ and PA searched the river Sunday night and a NJ State Police Helicopter was called to assist in the search. The initial search was close to the visitors center on the Pennsylvania side and rescue crews searched north of the Scutters Falls Bridge.


File photo by: Brian McCarthy


Bringing the Beach To Its Most Loyal Fans

July 18, 2022

JACKSON, NJ (OCEAN)–With beach season in full swing, a group of seniors were eager to celebrate. That’s why Bella Terra by Monarch recently brought seaside fun to its residents at the community located at 2 Kathleen Drive, Jackson Township.

The staff and a group of children sporting beach attire joined the residents in the fun. The seniors thrilled to raft pulls across the water, created sand art, dipped their toes in the pool, swayed to beach music, savored hotdogs, ice cream and other beach fare: and more.

“Many of our residents grew up at the shore, and it has been an important part of their lives for decades, from their childhood and onward” said Amy Schneider, program director for Bella Terra by Monarch. “This event enabled them to enjoy the seaside experience right outside their door and to show today’s kids how to have an old-fashioned wonderful time at the beach.”



Repeat Offender: Little Egg Harbor Man Who Is a Registered Sex Offender, Pleads Guilty To Child Pornography And Enticement Of A Minor In Criminal Sexual Conduct

In 2008, Frew was convicted in New Jersey of endangering the welfare of children due to his possession of child pornography. As a result of his prior convictions in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, Frew was a registered sex offender at the time of his conduct charged in the information.

July 18, 2022

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER) – An Ocean County, New Jersey, man today admitted receiving images of child sexual abuse and inducing a minor to send him sexually explicit images and engage in sexually explicit conduct over an online messaging service, U.S. Attorney Philip Sellinger announced.

David M. Frew, 41, of Little Egg Harbor, New Jersey, pleaded guilty by videoconference before U.S. District Judge Michael A. Shipp to an information charging him with one count of receipt of child pornography and one count of online enticement of a minor to engage in criminal sexual conduct.

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

In June 2017, Frew used an online messaging service to communicate with a minor victim. At Frew’s request, the victim sent Frew sexually explicit images.

In 2008, Frew was convicted of three counts of unlawful contact with a minor and one count of criminal use of a computer in Pennsylvania after sending sexually explicit photos or videos to investigators in the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s Child Predator Unit, who were posing as minors online. Also in 2008, Frew was convicted in New Jersey of endangering the welfare of children due to his possession of child pornography. As a result of his prior convictions in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, Frew was a registered sex offender at the time of his conduct charged in the information.

Because Frew is a previously convicted sex offender, the charge of receipt of child pornography carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years in prison, a statutory maximum potential penalty of 40 years in prison, and a $250,000 fine. The charge of online enticement carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in prison and a statutory maximum potential penalty of life in prison, and a $250,000 fine. Sentencing is scheduled for Nov. 23, 2022.

U.S. Attorney Sellinger credited special agents of the Department of Homeland Security, Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), in Atlantic City, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Jason J. Molina in Newark; the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) Technical Crime Unit; the RCMP National Child Exploitation Coordination Centre; the Ocean County Prosecutors Office, under the direction of Prosecutor Bradley D. Billhimer; and the Little Egg Harbor Police Department, under the direction of Chief James Hawkins, with the investigation leading to today’s guilty plea.

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

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Defense counsel: Benjamin West Esq., Trenton



Manalapan, NJ Man Admits To Online Sexual Enticement Of Minor

July 18, 2022

NEWARK, N.J. – A Manalapan, New Jersey, man today admitted using online chat applications to entice an adolescent to engage in prohibited sexual activity, U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger announced.

Angelo N. Curato, 30, pleaded guilty by videoconference before U.S. District Judge Brian Martinotti to a superseding information charging him with one count of online enticement of a minor.

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

From February 2017 through June 2017, Curato used online chat applications to misrepresent his identity and entice or coerce an adolescent to engage in prohibited sexual activity, knowing that the victim was under the age of 18.

The online enticement charge carries a maximum penalty of life in prison, a mandatory minimum prison term of 10 years, and a $250,000 fine. Sentencing is scheduled for Nov. 29, 2022.

U.S. Attorney Sellinger credited special agents of Department of Homeland Security, Homeland Security Investigations, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Jason J. Molina in Newark; and the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office, under the direction of Acting Prosecutor Lori Linskey, with the investigation leading to today’s guilty plea.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Barry O’Connell of the U.S. Attorney’s Office General Crimes Unit.

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Defense counsel: Rahul Sharma Esq., Assistant Federal Public Defender, Newark




Man Criminally Charged With Bias Crime Following Threats At Deal Synagogue

July 18, 2022

FREEHOLD, NJ (MONMOUTH)A Morris County man has been criminally charged with a bias crime as the result of threatening comments he made at a Jersey Shore synagogue late last week, Acting Monmouth County Prosecutor Lori Linskey announced Monday.

Nicholas Skirvin, 44, of Denville is charged with second-degree Bias Intimidation, third-degree Making Terroristic Threats, and Harassment, a petty disorderly persons offense.

Members of the Deal Police Department responded to the Ohel Yaacob Congregation at the corner of Lawrence Avenue and Ocean Avenue North at approximately 1 p.m. on Friday, July 15 on a report of an unknown person recording himself with a cell phone while making obscene gestures and screaming profanity-laced ethnic and homophobic slurs and threats at synagogue congregants.

A fast-moving investigation resulted in Skirvin being identified as a suspect in the case, and he was arrested by members of the Deal Police Department on a beach in nearby Asbury Park later the same afternoon. He was subsequently transported to the Monmouth County Correctional Institution (MCCI) pending a detention hearing that is now tentatively scheduled to take place on Monday, July 25, before Monmouth County Superior Court Judge Paul Escandon.

The State is filing a motion to keep Skirvin detained pending the outcome of the case.

“The hate-filled rhetoric heard last Friday in what is typically a peaceful neighborhood with a tight-knit Jewish community wasn’t just abhorrent and disturbing – it was criminal,” Acting Prosecutor Linskey said. “The charges being announced today should send a clear message that we take such conduct with the utmost seriousness. There is no place for hate in Monmouth County – especially when it is the motive behind a crime.” 

The Prosecutor’s Office sincerely thanks and recognizes the members of the Deal, Asbury Park, and Denville police departments who contributed to this investigation and arrest. The incident has also been reported to the New Jersey Office of the Attorney General, which tracks bias incidents and crimes occurring statewide.

This case has been assigned to Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutor Melanie Falco, Director of the Office’s Professional Responsibility and Bias Crime Bureau. Skirvin is being represented by Robert E. Dunn, Esq., with an office in Morristown.

If convicted of the second-degree offense, Skirvin would face a term of up to 10 years in state prison.

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


Suspect Charged In Zoom Attack Of Virtual Memorial Service Of 17-Year-Old High School Student

July 14, 2022

SOUTH BRUNSWICK, NJ (MIDDLESEX)–South Brunswick Police Chief Raymond Hayducka announced today a suspect has been identified and charged in a Zoom attack on a virtual memorial service for a South Brunswick High School student in February of 2021. The memorial service was being held for 17 year old Emily Murillo who tragically died in January of 2021. Due to Covid, the memorial service was broadcasted virtually. During the service, an unknown person entered the Zoom and threatened to blow up the funeral home and make the casket turn to ashes. “It was unspeakable to us that while family and friends were mourning the loss of this young girl, someone would look to threaten them,” said Chief Hayducka. Investigators never gave up in their search for the suspect. The case required numerous court orders, interaction with a variety of social media platforms, and partnering with state and federal law enforcement. “I told all the officers involved that we will never stop until we track down every lead. It took almost 18 months, but we got him,” said Chief Hayducka.

The suspect is a juvenile from North Jersey. He faces a 2nd degree charge of terroristic threats, a 3rd degree charge of false public alarm, and a 4th degree charge of cyber harassment. The charges were elevated because the threat was made during the state of emergency from the Covid pandemic.

South Brunswick Police thanked the Middlesex County Prosecutors Office, the New Jersey State Police, the Federal Bureau of Investigations, and law enforcement agencies in Connecticut and North Jersey for their assistance in the investigation.


The memorial service was being held for 17 year old Emily Murillo who tragically died in January of 2021.

A Gofundme page says:

On January 29th, our dear friends lost their beautiful 17-year-old daughter, Emily Murillo, in a tragic car accident. For those fortunate enough to have really known Emmy, you know how deeply we will miss her bright smile and sweet, sweet soul.

From chasing frogs near the creek when she attended Brunswick Acres Elementary to her two dogs and two geckos, Emmy always had a way with, and a love for, animals. She was determined to find a job working with them after graduating from South Brunswick High School this June, but she’s been taken from us far too soon.

Emily was a lifelong resident of South Brunswick and will be missed most deeply by her sister Kaylee, step brothers Dominic and Vincent, mom and stepfather Erin and Joe Popolo and her father, Oscar Murillo. Kaylee graduated from SBHS in 2017. Erin worked for years for the South Brunswick Board of Ed, and Oscar currently works at Deans Elementary School. Joe is a retired firefighter and is now a fire subcode official. They are the kind of people who help make this community great.

We know her family’s pain too well, and we know how much the kindness of friends, family, the community and even strangers have helped us, so we’re creating this GoFundMe page in the hope that Emmy’s wonderful family can know this comfort.


Tragedy At Spring Lake In Hamilton Township

July 14, 2022

HAMILTON, NJ (MERCER)–Hamilton Police Report that on July 14, 2022 at approximately 5:05 p.m., Officers were detailed to the area of Overlook Avenue on a report of a missing four year old boy who was last seen approximately forty minutes prior to Police being contacted.

Officers searched the area and at approximately 6:02 p.m. located the boy submerged in Spring Lake which is located in John A. Roebling Memorial Park.  The boy was pulled out of the water by members of the Hamilton Township Fire Department and rushed to the hospital where he was pronounced deceased.

Hamilton Police and the Mercer County Prosecutors Officer Homicide Task Force are investigating the incident.

Anyone with additional information regarding this incident is asked to contact Detective Pat Quick of the Criminal Investigations Juvenile Section at (609) 581-4111 or the Hamilton Police Crime Tip Hotline at (609) 581-4008.


File Photo


Trenton Man Pleads Guilty In Shooting

July 14, 2022

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Acting Attorney General Matthew J. Platkin today announced that a Trenton man has pleaded guilty in a shooting he committed with a “community gun” that had been used in a prior shooting allegedly committed by members of the violent “Get Money Boys” or “GMB” gang in 2020.

Kevion Watkins, 19, of Mellon Street pleaded guilty to second-degree aggravated assault for firing two bullets into a moving vehicle, striking one of the occupants in the hand following a physical altercation inside a Trenton deli last year. Watkins pleaded guilty before Superior Court Judge Anthony M. Massi in Mercer County on June 22, 2022. Sentencing for Watkins is scheduled for Sept. 23, 2022.

Under the plea agreement, the State will recommend a sentence of eight years in state prison, with 85 percent of the sentence – nearly seven years – to be served without parole eligibility.­­

 “A single gun can cause significant violence and destruction when it is circulated and shared by individuals involved in criminal activity,” said Acting Attorney General Platkin. “The arrest and conviction of this defendant not only brings accountability for this shooting, it also cuts off access to a community gun used for multiple violent crimes.”

Watkins was arrested on October 2, 2021 by Trenton Police who responded to a ShotSpotter alert of ­two rounds fired on Oakland Street shortly before 10 a.m. Watkins was taken into custody after he attempted to exit an Oakland Street apartment building where he fled after the shooting. Police recovered the weapon – a silver and black 9mm Ruger with a defaced serial number – under a floor mat in a common area of the building. 

The gun was later linked by ballistic testing to at least one prior shooting – a May 1, 2020 incident in which five GMB members allegedly opened fire on a group of individuals on Sanhican Drive in Trenton, wounding two men. The suspects charged in that shooting are among 20 alleged members and associates of GMB who were indicted last year in connection with multiple shootings in Trenton. Those shootings also include: the December 2019 murder of a 32-year-old man; the attempted murder of a Trenton police officer in February 2020; and a June 2020 shooting that wounded several bystanders, including a 12-year-old girl who was critically injured. Watkins, who turned 18 in August 2020, is not a defendant in that case

“By sharing intelligence with local and county law enforcement, we were able to connect the dots to secure critical evidence linking this lone shooting to a rash of gang violence terrorizing the city of Trenton,” said Director Pearl Minato of the Division of Criminal Justice. “We will continue working closely with our law enforcement partners throughout New Jersey and beyond to remove illegal guns from our streets and hold accountable individuals who use them to carry out their violent agendas.”

In pleading guilty, Watkins admitted to firing the gun recovered by police in the direction of two individuals who were in a car, intending to cause them serious bodily harm. A surveillance camera inside the deli captured footage of the two victims involved in a physical altercation with a group of people inside the store, and then showed the pair exiting the store and getting into a blue 2017 Chevy Impala. Subsequent footage from the camera showed an individual, later identified as Watkins, running down the street while displaying a firearm and then firing two rounds into the victims’ car as it passed by him. One of the bullets struck the driver in the hand. The other occupant was not injured.

On December 8, 2021, a Grand Jury indicted Watkins on two counts of first-degree attempted murder, two counts of second-degree aggravated assaulted, and numerous weapons charges including second-degree possession, receipt, or transfer of a community gun while engaging in criminal activity. A community gun is defined by statute as a firearm that is transferred among, between, or within any association of two or more persons who, while possessing that firearm, engage in criminal activity or use it unlawfully against the person or property of another.

Deputy Attorney General Karen M. Bornstein handled the case for the Division of Criminal Justice Gangs & Organized Crime Bureau under the supervision of Deputy Bureau Chief Cassandra Montalto and Bureau Chief Lauren Scarpa Yfantis. The case was investigated by the Trenton Police Department and the Mercer County Shooting Response Team, with Assistance from the New Jersey State Police Gangs & Organized Crime South Unit. 

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Defense Attorney Assistant Public Defender Melissa Karabulut.  



Amazon Prime Day 2022 was the Biggest Prime Day Event Ever

Amazon Prime members worldwide saved over $1.7 billion—more than any other Prime Day event

This year was the biggest Prime Day event for Amazon’s selling partners, most of whom are small and medium-sized businesses, whose sales growth in Amazon’s store outpaced Amazon’s retail business

Amazon Devices had a record-breaking Prime Day, selling more devices than any other Prime Day event


July 14, 2022

Prime members purchased more than 300 million items worldwide during Prime Day 2022, making this year’s event the biggest Prime Day event in Amazon’s history. And, more shopping means more savings—Prime members saved over $1.7 billion, more than any previous Prime Day event.

This year was the biggest Prime Day event for Amazon’s selling partners, most of whom are small and medium-sized businesses, whose sales growth in Amazon’s store outpaced Amazon’s retail business. Customers spent over $3 billion on more than 100 million small business items included in the Support Small Businesses to Win Big sweepstakes.

“Prime Day is a celebration of our Prime members, who look forward to this event every year, and we’re thrilled to have delivered incredible savings to them once again,” said Doug Herrington, CEO of Amazon Worldwide Stores. “This special event is made possible because of the support of our employees, vendors, and sellers, and I want to give a big thank you to all of them for making this a Prime Day to remember.”

“We were ecstatic to partner with Amazon for this year’s Prime Day,” said Rob Jackson, Ujamaa Lighting, a high-quality energy-efficient lightbulb company based in Austin, Texas. “Being a part of Amazon has provided Ujamaa with exposure to so many new customers beyond those in our local community—which has been invaluable to this small father/son business. We applaud Amazon for their efforts in promoting small businesses and look forward to working with them more in the future.”

Worldwide and U.S. shopping trends around Amazon’s Prime Day event include:

Worldwide Prime Day Trends

Shopping

  • Prime members worldwide purchased more than 100,000 items per minute during this year’s Prime Day event.
  • Some of the best-selling categories worldwide this Prime Day were Amazon Devices, Consumer Electronics, and Home.
  • Prime members worldwide did the most shopping from 9 a.m.—10 a.m. PT on Tuesday, July 12 during the entire Prime Day event.
  • Some of the best-selling items worldwide this Prime Day were from premium beauty brands, including LANEIGE and NuFACE; Apple Watch Series 7; diapers and wipes from Pampers and The Honest Company; kitchen essentials from Rachael Ray, Le Creuset, and Hamilton Beach; VTech and LeapFrog toys; Vital Proteins Collagen Whey; Levi’s apparel and accessories; Chemical Guys car wash products; and pet products from NUTRO, TEMPTATIONS, and GREENIES.
  • Since Prime Day shopping began on July 12, select Fire TV, Echo, and Blink devices were some of the best-selling items on Amazon worldwide.

Small Businesses

  • Customers supported small businesses in the three-week lead-up to Prime Day, generating more than $3 billion in sales for small businesses included in the Support Small Businesses to Win Big sweepstakes.
  • Customers purchased more than 100 million small business items in the three weeks leading up to Prime Day.

U.S. Prime Day Trends

Shopping

  • Prime members in the U.S. purchased more than 60,000 items per minute during this year’s Prime Day event.
  • Prime members in the U.S. did the most shopping from 8 p.m.—9 p.m. PT on Wednesday, July 13 during the U.S. Prime Day event.
  • Some of the best-selling categories in the U.S. this Prime Day were Consumer Electronics, Household Essentials, and Home.
  • Some of the best-selling items in the U.S. this Prime Day were premium beauty brands, including LANEIGE and NuFACE; Apple Watch Series 7; Crest Teeth Whitening and Oral-B electric toothbrushes; kids’ and baby clothing from Simple Joys by Carter’s; Bentgo Kids lunch boxes; Levi’s apparel and accessories; Shark vacuums, air purifiers, and steam mops; Beats by Dre headphones and earbuds; Coleman, Marmot, and ExOfficio outdoor gear and apparel; and construction toys including LEGO sets, Magna-Tiles, and PLAYMOBIL.
  • Customers in the U.S. used Prime Day to celebrate summer, purchasing more than 1.2 million pairs of sunglasses and more than 1 million swimsuits.
  • Since Prime Day shopping began on July 12, select Fire TV, Echo, and Blink devices were some of the best-selling items on Amazon in the U.S.

Small Businesses

  • During the three weeks leading up to Prime Day, customers shopped from small businesses included in the Support Small Businesses to Win Big sweepstakes across all 50 U.S. states, with those in Delaware, New York, and Wyoming seeing the biggest sales per capita.

Amazon Live

  • Amazon Live Prime Day streams had more than 100 million views.
  • Thousands of creators streamed throughout Prime Day 2022.

Every Day Made Better With Prime

Prime offers the best of shopping, savings, and entertainment to more than 200 million paid members around the world. In the U.S., that includes unlimited access to award-winning movies and series with Prime Video, ad-free listening of 2 million songs, thousands of stations and playlists, and thousands of podcasts with Amazon Music, free games with Prime Gaming, more than 3,000 books and magazines with Prime Reading, unlimited photo storage with Amazon Photos, and incredible savings with Prime Day. Prime was built on the foundation of unlimited fast, free shipping. Prime members enjoy ultrafast grocery delivery and pickup from Amazon Fresh and Whole Foods Market in more than 5,000 cities and towns, free Same-Day Delivery on hundreds of thousands of items in over 90 major metropolitan areas, and free One-Day Delivery on more than 20 million items coast to coast. Prime members also receive fast, free delivery on prescriptions from Amazon Pharmacy and prescription savings at more than 60,000 participating pharmacies in the U.S. To join Prime or start a 30-day free trial, visit amazon.com/prime.



NJDEP And NJ State Police Investigate Vandalism To Monitoring Buoys

July 14, 2022

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection is working with the State Police to investigate vandalism to harmful algal bloom monitoring buoys in several northern New Jersey lakes, specifically the detaching of buoys from anchor lines, Commissioner Shawn M. LaTourette announced today.

“These buoys gather water quality data used to warn the public about harmful algal bloom conditions and improve our long-term understanding of these blooms,” said Commissioner LaTourette. “When someone cuts a buoy free, they are jeopardizing this work and placing boaters, personal watercraft users and other recreational users of the lakes at risk of injury.”

“State Police marine and land-based units have stepped up patrols in the areas of these buoys and we will criminally charge anyone caught tampering with them to the full extent of the law,” said Colonel Patrick J. Callahan, Superintendent of the New Jersey State Police. “We are asking for the public’s help in putting a stop to this.”


Anyone with information about these incidents or sees suspicious behavior is urged to contact the State Police at 609-882-2000 or the DEP’s hotline at 877-WARNDEP (877-927-6337).


“I am disappointed to learn of the recent vandalism to the monitoring buoys,” said 25th Legislative District Sen. Anthony M. Bucco. “Preserving the quality of the water in these lakes is critically important for recreation and the businesses that surround our lake communities.  These buoys are an important part of that process.  I encourage anyone with information regarding the intentional destruction of these devices to report it to the local authorities or the State Police.”

 “As Mayors of the Lake Hopatcong communities, we have worked very hard over the last few years and partnered successfully with the NJDEP since the original harmful algal bloom in 2019, said Jefferson Township Mayor Eric F. Wilsusen. “Monitoring the lake and communicating with the public about water quality issues concerning a potential harmful algal bloom is vital to all to best utilize this valuable resource. Whoever intentionally vandalized the harmful algal bloom monitoring buoys does not have our lake’s best interest in mind and is doing a disservice to the community.”

Since June of this year, there have been two incidents at Lake Hopatcong, one at Greenwood Lake, and one, most recently, at Spruce Run Reservoir, around the Fourth of July weekend. There were also two incidents at Lake Hopatcong last summer. In each case, the buoys were recovered.

In addition, there have been three incidents of damage likely resulting from boats hitting the buoys unintentionally. The DEP reminds the boating public to be alert to the presence of the buoys. The perimeter of each buoy is marked by safety buoys.

The DEP maintains a network of high-tech real-time monitoring buoys as part of a comprehensive response to harmful algal blooms to protect public health and tourism. They gather a wide range of water quality data, including phycocyanin pigments that are indicative of harmful algal blooms, turbidity, salinity, dissolved oxygen, temperature, chlorophyll and pH.

A growing global problem due to climate change, harmful algal blooms are not caused by true algae but rather by cyanobacteria that in many ways resemble and behave like algae. These cyanobacteria naturally occur in fresh water and can proliferate to unhealthful levels in sunlight and hot weather, forming dense mats resembling pea soup or spilled paint.

Exposure to cyanobacteria cells can cause a range of mild to moderate health effects, including rashes, allergy-like reactions, flu-like symptoms, gastroenteritis, respiratory irritation and eye irritation. Incidental ingestion of water containing the toxins these bacteria can produce, known as cyanotoxins, can result in more serious health effects such as liver toxicity and neurological effects. Children and pets are more vulnerable because they ingest more water in relation to their size.

For more information on harmful algal blooms and the state’s interactive harmful algal bloom mapping tool, visit https://www.nj.gov/dep/hab/



16-Year-Old Apprehended, Charged With Murder, And Weapons Offences, In Connection With Fatal Shooting In Asbury Park, NJ

July 14, 2022

FREEHOLD – A teenager has been apprehended in connection with a fatal shooting that took place late last week in Asbury Park, Acting Monmouth County Prosecutor Lori Linskey announced Thursday.

The defendant, a 16-year-old male whose identity is being withheld due to his age, has had juvenile complaints of murder and two related weapons offenses filed against him. He remains in custody pending his next court appearance.   

Shortly after 5:45 p.m. on Friday, July 8, members of the Asbury Park Police Department responded to a report of gunfire originating from the 100 block of Prospect Avenue, near the intersection with Atlantic Avenue.

Upon arrival at the scene, officers encountered 19-year-old Dariel Vernet of Asbury Park, who had sustained multiple gunshot injuries. He was transported to Jersey Shore University Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead approximately one hour later. An autopsy performed Sunday yielded a determination that the manner of death was homicide.

The investigation into Vernet’s death, led by members of the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office’s Major Crimes Bureau and the Asbury Park Police Department, resulted in the juvenile defendant being identified as a suspect, and he was taken into custody without incident Tuesday evening.

Anyone with information about this matter is still urged to contact MCPO Detective Christopher Guy at 800-533-7443 or Asbury Park Police Department Detective Anthony Troublefield at 732-774-1300. This case has been assigned to Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutor Caitlin J. Sidley.

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

Anyone who feels the need to remain anonymous but has information about this or any crime can submit a tip to the Monmouth County Crime Stoppers by calling their confidential telephone tipline at 1-800-671-4400, by downloading and using the free P3 Tips mobile app (available on iOS and Android – https://www.p3tips.com/1182), by calling 800-671-4400, or by going to the website at: www.monmouthcountycrimestoppers.com.


Garden State Outdoor Sports Show, August 11-14, 2022, is Cancelled Due To Industry Supply Chain And Labor Issues

Next show in NJ will be: Garden State Outdoor Sports Show, Winter Show January 12-15, 2023

July 14, 2022

EDISON, NJ (MIDDLESEX)–The Outdoor Sports Group (OSG) each January is proud to produce The Garden State Outdoor Sports Show, bringing together the outdoor community to experience a fishing & hunting spectacular.   Due to COVID 19 and health concerns we were unable to produce the 2022 January event and were forced to re-scheduled it to August 11-14,2022.

We had high hopes that an August event on the verge of hunting season would provide a forum for outdoor enthusiast to shop for amazing deals, meet the experts and create enjoyable family memories. While we would prefer to be giving you an update today on joining us at the New Jersey Convention & Exposition Center in Edison, NJ; we unfortunately must cancel the August event.

As events are assembling around the country and we recover from the effects of COVID 19, we find the outdoor industry in a peculiar situation. Our industry has never been so alive with individuals participating in outdoor activities, purchasing hunting & fishing licenses, taking part in conservation awareness, having a desire to travel and much more. The challenge currently is the outdoor industry is still suffering from supply chain and labor shortages making it hard to book a trip, purchase fishing tackle, boats, ATV’s and many of the products that complement the perfect outdoor adventure.

We are passionate about delivering sports shows that showcase the latest products, services, travel destination, ATV’s, RV’s, boats, powersports, fishing tackle, outfitters, wildlife art, hunting supplies, charters, paddle boards, knives and much more. Based on the supply chain and labor issue we would not be able to deliver the quality of show that the outdoor community deserves. As disappointing as it is to cancel an event is in the

best interest of our loyal vendors and attendees Outdoor Sports Group is going to focus its efforts on producing a successful show January 12-15, 2023, that showcases 150-200 + exhibitor booths and delivers 12,500-15,000 + attendees.

The January 2023 show will feature the New Jersey Deer Classic with an impressive display of trophy heads from the previous three hunting seasons, the 9th Annual Garden State 3D Archery Tournament, The Hawg Trough, Fishing & Hunting Seminars and co-located with Safe Con, New Jersey 2nd Amendment Firearms Education Conference. Outdoor enthusiast will have the opportunity to book future fishing trips, buy a boat or RV, and gear up for hunting season, plus much more.

The Outdoor Sports Group staff will be connecting directly with exhibiting companies with more information regarding the postponing of the event, including options to receive a full refund or apply booth deposit to the 2023 events.

Our exhibitor profiles, guest speaker announcements and other information will be available at www.gsoss.com Outdoor Sports Group is schedule to hold these future events:

2023 Show Schedule:

  • Garden State Outdoor Sports Show, Winter Show January 12-15, 2023
  • Northern Illinois Sports Show, January 19-22, 2023
  • Milwaukee Journal Sentinel Sports Show, March 9-12, 2023

About Outdoor Sports Group

Outdoor Sports Group (OSG) is the producer of the finest outdoor sports show on the East Coast and in the Midwest dedicated to the consumer sports enthusiast. The Outdoor Sports Group team is dedicated to producing sports shows with quality exhibitors, seminars and attractions that speak to sportsmen and women of all ages with a focus on activities that the whole family will enjoy.



Beloved, Helmetta Fire Chief, Identified As Victim Of Motorcycle Crash In South Brunswick


Helmetta Fire Chief Christopher Acts was a 28 year veteran of the department and also served as a Deputy Warden with the New Jersey State Forest Fire Service, B – Division, Section 10.

He was a devoted, dedicated member who worked tirelessly on the apparatus and the building throughout the years. His efforts on behalf of the Borough of Helmetta will be sorely missed.


July 12, 2022

SOUTH BRUNSWICK, NJ (MIDDLESEX)–Middlesex County Prosecutor Yolanda Ciccone and Chief Raymond Hayducka of the South Brunswick Police Department announced today that a fatal crash occurred on July 11, 2022, on Georges Road in South Brunswick Township.

An investigation by Patrolman First-Class Jason Gassman of the South Brunswick Police Department and Detective Jonathan Berman of the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office determined that on July 11, 2022, at 3:21 P.M., authorities responded to the intersection of Georges Road and Summerfield Boulevard following the report of a crash. Upon their arrival, authorities determined a motorcycle driven by Christopher Acs, 47, of Jamesburg, was traveling northbound on Georges Road when it was struck by a 2019 Honda Odyssey. Acs succumbed to his injuries and was ultimately pronounced dead at the scene.

The investigation is active and continuing. Anyone with information is asked to call Patrolman First-Class Gassman of the South Brunswick Police Department at (732) 329-4000 X 7432 or Detective Berman of the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office at (732) 745-4328.


It is with the deepest regret that the officers and members of the Helmetta Fire Department announce the untimely passing of our current Fire Chief, Christopher Acs.

Chief Acs was a 28 year veteran of the department and also served as a Deputy Warden with the New Jersey State Forest Fire Service, B – Division, Section 10.

He was a devoted, dedicated member who worked tirelessly on the apparatus and the building throughout the years. His efforts on behalf of the Borough of Helmetta will be sorely missed.


It is with deep regret that the officers and members of the Helmetta Fire Department report the untimely passing of current Fire Chief Christopher Acs.

Services for Chief Acs have been finalized and we will be providing full fire department honors. It is requested that any agency who wish to pay their respects please note the following:

Viewing:

Viewing will be held on 07/15/22 at 5:00 PM – 8:00 PM at the Lester Funeral Home (16 West Church Street). Parking may be limited, please follow all directions from Jamesburg Police Department on placement of any apparatus. Helmetta Fire Department service will be conducted at 7:00pm.

Funeral:

Funeral Services will be held on 07/16/22 at 11:00 am at the Lester Funeral Home (16 West Church Street).

Staging area will be designated, please follow all directions of the Jamesburg Police Department.

Final Alarm:

At the conclusion of the Funeral Services, Fire Department Procession will proceed from Lester Funeral Home to the Helmetta Fire Department for Chief Acs’ final alarm.




State Grand Jury Declines to Criminally Charge Officer Involved in Fatal Motor Vehicle Pursuit in Mansfield Township, N.J., on October 27, 2020

July 12, 2022

BORDENTOWN TOWNSHIP, NJ (BURLINGTON) – A state grand jury has voted not to file any criminal charges at the conclusion of its deliberations regarding the death of Keron Roundtree, 23, of Trenton, New Jersey, who was injured in a crash as he accelerated away from Bordentown Township Police Officer Keith Alexander after an attempted traffic stop on October 27, 2020. Mr. Roundtree succumbed to those injuries on November 17, 2020, at which time the investigation transferred from the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office to the Attorney General’s Office, pursuant to P.L. 2019, c.1.

The fatal police encounter was investigated by the Office of Public Integrity and Accountability (OPIA) and presented to New Jersey residents called to serve on the grand jury in accordance with Directive 2019-4, the “Independent Prosecutor Directive” issued in 2019. In July 2021, OPIA issued standard operating procedures (“SOPs”) to ensure that these grand jury presentations are conducted in a neutral, objective manner, and with appropriate transparency regarding the process, consistent with the Independent Prosecutor Directive.

The investigation included interviews of witnesses, collection of forensic evidence, review of video footage and autopsy results from the medical examiner. After hearing testimony and evidence from the investigation, the grand jury concluded its deliberations yesterday July 11, and voted “no bill,” meaning the grand jury concluded that no criminal charges should be filed against the officer involved in the fatal encounter.

According to the investigation, on the night of October 27, 2020, Officer Alexander was on patrol on Route 206 Southbound in Bordentown in a marked police vehicle when he saw a Nissan Maxima traveling southbound in the left lane brake abruptly. The car, which was driven by Mr. Roundtree, resumed traveling southbound. While stopped at a traffic light, Officer Alexander observed the Maxima’s temporary Pennsylvania license plate and suspected it was fictitious. Officer Alexander then followed Mr. Roundtree and observed him commit several motor vehicle infractions, including an illegal U-turn.

At approximately 8:51 p.m., about two minutes after he began following the Maxima, Officer Alexander activated his overhead lights and siren to make a motor vehicle stop. At that point, Mr. Roundtree failed to obey a stop sign and sped off down Route 206 South, traveling at speeds that reached in excess of 100 mph. Approximately one minute later, and without coming into contact with another car, Mr. Roundtree drove onto the shoulder of the highway to maneuver around other cars, swerved back onto the road, lost control of the car, and crashed into the woods by the side of Route 206. The car traveled into and out of the woods, coming to rest on the right shoulder of Route 206 Southbound.

Officer Alexander exited his vehicle and located the Maxima, which was heavily damaged. Both Mr. Roundtree and an adult male passenger were stuck inside. Two bystanders assisted Officer Alexander in removing and rendering aid to both. Once ambulances arrived, the occupants of the Maxima were transported to Capital Health Regional Medical Center in Trenton, N.J. Mr. Roundtree remained in the hospital until life support was removed on November 17, 2020, when he was pronounced deceased. The passenger was admitted for treatment and released approximately one week later.

The investigation later revealed that the Maxima had been stolen from an apartment complex in Philadelphia, and the temporary license plate on the car had been forged.

A 2019 law, P.L. 2019, c. 1, requires the Attorney General’s Office to conduct investigations of a person’s death that occurs during an encounter with a law enforcement officer acting in the officer’s official capacity or while the decedent is in custody. It requires that all such investigations be presented to a grand jury to determine if the evidence supports the return of an indictment against the officer or officers involved.

A conflicts check was conducted pursuant to the Independent Prosecutor Directive and no actual or potential conflict of interest was found involving any individual assigned to the investigation. Prior to presentation to the grand jury, the investigation was reviewed by OPIA Executive Director Thomas Eicher in accordance with the policies and procedures established for these presentations in the SOPs.

At the conclusion of these investigations, pursuant to the Independent Prosecutor Directive and SOPs, OPIA determines whether any principal should be referred to the appropriate law enforcement agency for administrative review in accordance with the AG’s Internal Affairs Policy & Procedures. OPIA monitors any resulting review and takes such actions as are necessary to ensure that the review is completed in a timely fashion, and that appropriate actions are taken based on the results of the review.

Further information about how fatal police encounters are investigated in New Jersey under the directive is found at this link:

http://www.nj.gov/oag/independent-prosecutor/



Slap On The Wrist: 16-Year-Old Woodbridge Teen Gets Of 2-Years Of Probation For Bringing Loaded Handgun To JFK High School

Woodbridge Teen Spared Jail Time by the Court in Case Involving Loaded Handgun Brought School

July 12, 2022

WOODBRIDGE, NJ (MIDDLESEX)–A Woodbridge Teen was spared jail time in case involving loaded handgun brought school

Middlesex County Prosecutor Yolanda Ciccone and Director Robert Hubner of the Woodbridge Police Department announced today that Malachi Parcells, 16, of Woodbridge has been sentenced to a two-year term of probation for bringing a loaded handgun to a school.

On March 28, 2022, Woodbridge Police officers responded to JFK High School after receiving a report that a student was in possession of a handgun. Upon arrival, officers were informed that the JFK High School staff received a tip stating that Malachi Parcells was carrying a gun to school in his fanny pack. Parcells was stopped and questioned by school staff upon his arrival that morning. During a search of Parcells, a loaded 9mm handgun was found.

A subsequent investigation conducted by Detective Ryan Hoppock of the Woodbridge Police department resulted in Parcells being charged with acts of juvenile delinquency for offenses which if committed by an adult would constitute third-degree Possession of a Weapon in an Educational Institution, second-degree Unlawful Possession of a Firearm, and second­ degree Possession of a Firearm for an Unlawful Purpose.

On June 24, 2022, Parcells pled guilty to Unlawful Possession of a Weapon before the Honorable Deborah Venezia, P.J.F.P. On June 30, 2022, the State argued for a two-year term of incarceration, however Parcells was sentenced instead to two years of probation by the Court.


Tow Truck Transporting Vehicles Burns On New Jersey Turnpike In Robbinsville

July 12, 2022

ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–At 10:56 a.m. the Robbinsville Township Fire Department responded to a vehicle fire on the New Jersey Turnpike North Bound Outer Lanes at mile post 62.4 near the Sharon Road overpass. A column of heavy black smoke could be seen for miles. Upon arrival it was determined that two vehicles being towed were well involved in fire, and the fire was also extending to the tow truck itself. Robbinsville firefighters arrived and began to extinguish the fire, an extra engine from Robbinsville as well as Hightstown Fire Company arrived to assist in the firefighting operations and for extra water. A tanker was called from Hope Fire Company of Allentown but was not needed with the water supply on location. It did not appear to be any injuries and there was a small traffic delay in the area. New Jersey State Police was on scene. No other details are available at this time.




22 Removed By Good Samaritan After Charter Boat Takes On Water In Townsend Inlet

July 11, 2022

SEA ISLE CITY, NJ (CAPE MAY)–U.S. Coast Guard Mid-Atlantic reports that a good Samaritan helped remove 22 passengers from the charter boat STARFISH tonight after the boat began taking on water near Townsend Inlet Bridge, in New Jersey.

STARFISH reportedly collided with the Townsends Inlet Bridge and suffered a gash in the starboard hull, causing a few compartments to flood.

The good SAM removed all passengers and took them to the docks in Sea Isle City where EMS was waiting to assist. There were no reported injuries.

Local commercial salvage is currently working to dewater STARFISH and will remain with the boat overnight while a damage and tow plan are created.

Dive ops were conducted and confirmed there is no damage to fuel tanks. No pollution has been reported.

U.S. Coast Guard Mid-Atlantic thanks all who responded to help out the passengers and crew.



Fatal Shooting Investigation In Asbury Park, NJ

July 11, 2022

ASBURY PARK, NJ (MONMOUTH)–A fatal shooting that took place late last week in Asbury Park is under active investigation, Acting Monmouth County Prosecutor Lori Linskey announced Monday.

Shortly after 5:45 p.m. on Friday, July 8, members of the Asbury Park Police Department responded to a report of gunfire originating from the 100 block of Prospect Avenue, near the intersection with Atlantic Avenue.

Upon arrival at the scene, officers encountered 19-year-old Dariel Vernet of Asbury Park, who had sustained multiple gunshot injuries. He was transported to Jersey Shore University Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead approximately one hour later. An autopsy performed Sunday yielded a determination that the manner of death was homicide.

The investigation into Vernet’s death is being handled by the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office’s Major Crimes Bureau and the Asbury Park Police Department. Anyone with information about this matter is being urged to contact MCPO Detective Christopher Guy at 800-533-7443 or Asbury Park Police Department Detective Anthony Troublefield at 732-774-1300.

This case has been assigned to Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutor Caitlin J. Sidley.

Man Sentenced To 7-Years In NJ State Prison For Distributing 11.5 Pounds Of Marijuana And Other Narcotics On Long Beach Island

July 11, 2022

LONG BEACH TOWNSHIP, NJ (OCEAN)–Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley D. Billhimer announced that on July 8, 2022, Michael Klimowicz, 32, of North Brunswick, was sentenced by the Honorable Guy P. Ryan, P.J.Cr.P, to seven years New Jersey State Prison as a result of his previously entered guilty plea to Possession of Marijuana in a Quantity Greater than Five Pounds but Less than Twenty-Five Pounds with Intent to Distribute in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5a(1) and N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5b(10), in connection with an arrest that occurred in Long Beach Township on January 27, 2019. Klimowicz pled guilty to the charge before Judge Ryan on April 12, 2022.

An investigation by the Long Beach Township Police Department revealed that a residence in the Holgate section of Long Beach Township was being utilized by Klimowicz to store and distribute narcotics. In furtherance of the investigation, Detectives executed a court-authorized search warrant on the subject residence on January 27, 2019. As a result, Detectives seized roughly 11.5 pounds of Marijuana, additional quantities of other illegal narcotics, and approximately $9,300 in United States currency. Klimowicz was arrested at the residence without incident; he was transported to the Ocean County Jail, and later released as a consequence of New Jersey Bail Reform.

Prosecutor Billhimer acknowledges the diligent efforts of Supervising Assistant Prosecutor Kristin Pressman who handled the case on behalf of the State, as well as the Long Beach Township Police Department Patrol Division, Long Beach Township Police Department Detective Bureau, Long Beach Township Police Department K-9 Unit, and Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office High Tech Crime Unit, for their collective assistance in connection with this investigation leading to Klimowicz’s apprehension and now his state prison sentence.