EAST WINDSOR, NJ (MERCER)–MidJersey.News was able to capture possible tornadic activity in the area of Old York Road and the NJ Turnpike. The clouds with rotation indicating a possible tornado was spotted behind the Field Of Terror off of Windsor Prineville Road as it moved toward Millstone Township. Further down the road the tornadic activity crossed Winsor Prineville Road towards Roosevelt and Clarksburg.
Just prior to the possible tornado spotting there were reports of damage to a building on Route 130 in Robbinsville and wires down near Gordon Road, Perrineville Road and Allen’s Road.
Several people were stuck in vehicles around the area including Mercer Street Hightstown, Main Street Hightstown, One Mile Road East Windsor, Route 571 East and West Windsor.
MidJersey.News will be out in the morning to check for damage in the areas where the possible tornado was spotted. This is the same area where the NWS reported the rotation.
HIGHTSTOWN, NJ (MERCER)–Hightstown Police were investigating a 9-1-1 call earlier for a missing teenager. It escalated around 5:50 p.m. when the Hightstown Fire Company was dispatched to the Peddie Lake in the area of Main Street for a “water rescue” due to the nature of the call mutual aid was dispatched from several area fire departments and rescue squads.
The search concentrated around the Peddie Lake Bridge on East Ward Street. Hightstown Police and Peddie Security searched the area and the banks of the lake and the school campus. Fire Departments deployed boats to search the area of the bridge. The Mercer County Sherriff’s Office searched with their drone.
After approximately a two hour search with boats, divers, drones and by foot along the lake nothing was found at the lake. The search was called off just before dark.
Responding departments include: Hightstown Fire Company, Robbinsville Township Fire Department, Plainsboro Fire Department, Trenton Fire Department, Hamilton Township Fire Department, West Windsor Fire Company, East Windsor Fire Company, Hightstown EMS, Robbinsville EMS, East Windsor EMS, Signal 22 and others.
Hightstown Police are continuing the investigation.
Update: Hightstown Police say they are investigating this as a false call. The investigation is still active and when more information becomes available they will let us know.
EAST WINDSOR, NJ (MERCER)–Around 7:20 a.m. an accident was reported on the NJ Turnpike south bound inner roadway at mile post 70 with reported entrapment. The Hightstown Fire Company, Monroe Township Fire Department, Cranbury First Aid Squad, Hightstown First Aid Squad and Capital Paramedics were sent to the scene.
Monroe Township Fire reported “going in service with the tools” to cut the driver of one of the vehicles out of the car.
The injured were transported to a local hospital for treatment of non-life-threating injuries.
NJ State Police is investigating the crash. No further information is available at this time.
Just south of this accident Robbinsville Township Fire Department and EMS and East Windsor Rescue Squad were sent to mile marker 67 north bound inner roadway for another crash. It was unclear if anyone in that accident was transported to the hospital.
Heavy rains were moving though the area at the time of the crashes from Tropical Storm Elsa.
EAST WINDSOR, NJ (MERCER)–East Windsor Fire Company and Hightstown Fire Company were dispatched to Mercer Street / Route 33 across from Home Depot for a tractor on fire around 2:18 p.m. Responding units reported a large column of smoke in the area and upon arrival found a well involved NJ DOT tractor on fire. Firefighters used water and firefighting foam to put the fire out. There was a small diesel spill on the side of the roadway and the NJ Department of Environmental protection was called. The roadway was shut down and a detour was set up in the area until the situation could be resolved.
CRANBURY TOWNSHIP, NJ (MIDDLESEX)–Around 8:46 p.m. the Hightstown Fire Company, Cranbury Fire Company, and EMS were dispatched to the NJ Turnpike for a vehicle fire on the inner roadway at mile marker 69. When the fire chief arrived he found a vehicle well involved in fire as the result of an accident. Hightstown and Cranbury firefighters extinguished the fire. It was reported that the injures were non-life-threating and a second ambulance was called to the scene. It was unclear if anyone was transported from the scene to the hospital.
EAST WINDSOR, NJ (MERCER)–The Robbinsville Township Fire Department and Hightstown Fire Company were dispatched to the NJ Turnpike inner roadway at mile post 65.6 north bound for two vehicle accident with roll over and entrapment at 11:42 a.m. Robbinsville EMS, Capital Health EMS, Cranbury First Aid Squad and Capital Health Paramedics responded and treated patients on scene. One person was transported to the Trauma Center at Capital Health Regional Medical Center and a “trauma alert” was called. Another person was transported to RWJ at Hamilton Hospital with non-life threating injures. Robbinsville firefighters help get patients out of vehicles for transport and stood by until vehicle could be removed by the George’s Garage.
New Jersey State Police is investigating the crash. No further information is available at this time.
Defendants Include Alleged Leader of Latin Kings Street Gang and Eight Inmates Currently Incarcerated in State Prisons, Including New Jersey State Prison in Trenton
April 29, 2021
TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal today announced that an alleged local leader of the Latin Kings street gang and eight inmates allegedly under his command in various correctional facilities—including Northern State Prison in Newark and New Jersey State Prison in Trenton—have been charged with forming a “hit squad” within the prison system to commit assaults on behalf of the gang. They are specifically charged with engaging in conduct including a brutal attack on one inmate in New Jersey State Prison, a planned assault on another inmate in Northern State Prison that was prevented by the New Jersey Department of Corrections (DOC), and possession of makeshift blades called “shanks.”
The charges were filed by the Attorney General’s Office of Public Integrity and Accountability (OPIA) as the result of an investigation by members of the DOC Special Investigations Division (SID) and OPIA Corruption Central Squad.
Frank Blake, aka “Lafay,” 33, of Hillside, N.J., an alleged leader of the Elizabeth, N.J., chapter of the Almighty Latin King and Queen Nation (ALKQN) street gang, allegedly created and directed a “hit squad” in the state prison system to carry out assaults on behalf of ALKQN. Blake and inmate Alexander Chludzinski, aka “D Noble,” 27, of Phillipsburg, N.J., allegedly discussed going to the homes of DOC-SID investigators leading this investigation to commit violence against them.
It is further alleged that, at the request of inmates William Figueroa, aka “King Stitch,” 27, of Hightstown, N.J., and Andy Reyes, aka “Chango,” 25, of Somerset, N.J.—and at the direction of Blake—inmates Roberto Garcia, aka “Taz,” 25, of Carteret, N.J., and Eduardo Lago, aka “King Bay Bay,” 27, of Newark, N.J., brutally assaulted an inmate in the prison yard of New Jersey State Prison in Trenton on Sept. 28, 2020, causing the victim to suffer a traumatic brain injury.
Between December 2020 and February 2021, Blake allegedly conspired with and directed alleged ALKQN members Chludzinski, Reyes, Kevin Washington, aka “King Jafi,” 32, of Atlantic City, N.J., James Zarate, aka “King Samurai,” 33, of Randolph, N.J., and Larry Cardona, aka “King Legend,” 28, of Elizabeth, N.J., in planning an assault on an inmate at Northern State Prison in Newark. DOC-SID investigators learned of the alleged plot and placed the targeted inmate in protective custody to prevent the attempted assault.
“We allege that Blake and the Latin Kings gang members he commanded in the state prison system not only conspired to assault and seriously injure inmates, but went so far as to plot violence against members of the Department of Corrections who were investigating them,” said Attorney General Grewal. “Gang violence is always a danger in our state prisons, but we charge that these defendants and their so-called ‘hit squad’ posed a special threat to the safety and security of inmates and correctional police officers. I commend the DOC Special Investigations Division and OPIA for their outstanding work to neutralize this threat and bring these alleged gang members to justice.”
“As a result of the thorough investigation conducted by the DOC Special Investigations Division and our detectives and attorneys, eight of these nine defendants now face a charge of first-degree gang criminality carrying a sentence of up to 20 years in prison,” said OPIA Director Thomas Eicher. “This investigation is ongoing. We charge that these members of the Latin Kings sought to hold sway in prison through violence and fear as if they were out on the street, but we have stopped their alleged reign of terror. We’re committed to protecting people in custody.”
Blake—the only defendant not currently incarcerated—allegedly commanded the gang members inside the prison through phone calls as well as letters. Blake was arrested on Thursday, April 22, 2021. The eight inmates were charged yesterday. All of the defendants except Cardona are charged with first-degree gang criminality and second-degree conspiracy. In addition, Blake is charged with first-degree promoting organized street crime.
Blake, Figueroa, Reyes, Lago, and Garcia are charged with second-degree aggravated assault in the assault on the inmate at New Jersey State Prison who suffered a brain injury. Blake, Chludzinski, Washington, Reyes, Zarate, and Cardona are charged with second-degree attempted aggravated assault for allegedly planning the assault at Northern State Prison that was thwarted when DOC placed the targeted inmate in protective custody.
Blake and Chludzinski are charged with second-degree hindering apprehension or prosecution, third-degree terroristic threats, and fourth-degree obstruction for the alleged threats of violence against DOC-SID members investigating this case. Cardona, Chludzinski, Reyes, and Zarate are charged with possessing shanks, and Cardona is charged with possessing a cell phone in prison.
When Blake was arrested, investigators executed a search warrant at his home, seizing a .45-caliber pistol, a .357-caliber revolver loaded with hollow-point bullets, a 9mm pistol, an illegal large-capacity magazine, additional bullets including hollow-point rounds, numerous suspected methamphetamine pills, and two digital scales. For those items, he is charged with second-degree possession of a weapon by a convicted felon, second-degree possession of a weapon during commission of a drug offense, third-degree possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute in a school zone, and fourth-degree possession of a large-capacity magazine, among other charges.
The criminal complaints against the nine defendants are posted with this press release at:
Deputy Attorney General Colin Keiffer is prosecuting the case for the OPIA Corruption Bureau, under the supervision of OPIA Corruption Bureau Chief Peter Lee and OPIA Deputy Director Anthony Picione. They were assisted by Deputy Attorney General Heather Hausleben and other members of the Division of Criminal Justice Gangs & Organized Crime Bureau.
Attorney General Grewal thanked all of the investigators and detectives who conducted the investigation for the DOC Special Investigations Division and the OPIA Corruption Central Squad. For security reasons, they are not being named individually.
Attorney General Grewal also thanked the New Jersey State Police TEAMS North Unit, Division of Criminal Justice Cyber Crimes Unit, Union County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crimes Division, and Essex County Prosecutor’s Office Intelligence Unit for their assistance in the investigation.
First-degree charges carry a sentence of 10 to 20 years in state prison and a fine of up to $200,000. The sentences for gang criminality and promoting organized street crime must be consecutive to the sentence for any underlying offense. Second-degree charges carry a sentence of five to 10 years in state prison and a fine of up to $150,000. Possession of a weapon as a convicted felon carries a mandatory period of parole ineligibility of five years. Third-degree charges carry a sentence of three to five years in state prison and a fine of up to $15,000, while fourth-degree charges carry a sentence of up to 18 months in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.
The charges are merely accusations and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–Pfizer Vaccination for Eligible Teens April 27-29 The West Windsor Health Department is partnering with Hamilton Township, Princeton and Olden Pharmacy to offer Pfizer COVID-19 vaccinations to individuals 16 and 17 years of age who live, work or attend school in West Windsor, Robbinsville or Hightstown.
These mini clinics will be held from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday, April 27, Wednesday, April 28 and Thursday, April 29. Appointments are required and parents or guardians must attend the clinic. If you are interested in this opportunity, please contact the Health Department at 609-936-8400 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
EAST WINDSOR, NJ (MERCER)–The New Jersey State Police and the East Windsor Township Police Department are seeking the public’s assistance with identifying a man who allegedly broke into three Sea Box freight storage containers and stole several items.
On Sunday, April 11, at approximately 10:00 a.m., the suspect cut the padlocks on three storage containers located in the township and removed a pallet of LED parking lot lights. The suspect also stole a Honda generator, two jumping jack power tools, a rotary laser, a concrete saw, two rolls of copper, a trash pump, an impact drill, and a plastic blower.
Prior to departing, the suspect removed a security camera from the scene and placed it in his vehicle while it was still recording. He then fled in a Ford van, pickup truck, or box truck with a circular-shaped sticker in the driver’s side corner of the windshield.
Detectives with the State Police Forensic Imaging Unit completed a detailed sketch of the suspect based on surveillance images.
Anyone with information is asked to contact Detective McCandrew of the East Windsor Police Department at 609-448-5678, ext. 230 or email email@example.com.
EAST WINDSOR, NJ (MERCER)–A 1:08 pm the Hightstown and Robbinsville Township Fire Departments were dispatched to a vehicle fire on the NJ Turnpike at Mile Marker 66 South Bound just south of Exit 8 Hightstown/East Windsor.
When the first firefighters arrived they found a car carrier fire carrying several cars on fire on the shoulder. Heavy black smoke could be seen for miles as the vehicles burned and flames were about 20 feet in the air at times above the well involved vehicle.
Water tankers were called from East Windsor Fire Company, Plainsboro Fire Company and Monroe Township for additional water to fight the fire. The firefighters had the flames under control within about a half hour.
Fire units were on scene until 2:34 pm as they mopped up hot spots.
There was a significant south bound traffic delay of 3 miles according to Google Maps at the time of this report.
No further information is available at this time and no word on the cause of the fire.
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Slow down roads are very slippery in untreated areas.
HIGHTSTOWN, NJ (MERCER)–Around 3:50 pm the Hightstown Police Department, Hightstown Fire Company and Robbinsville EMS responded to North Main Street and Monmouth Street for a vehicle into a building.
Upon arrival the vehicle appeared to have struck a home and came to rest in the street at the corner of N. Main and Monmouth Streets, no injuries were reported. Hightstown Police shut down the intersection until the car could be towed away.
Hightstown Police Department is investigating the accident. No other information is available.
HIGHTSTOWN, NJ (MERCER)–A man became trapped near the falls when he entered the Peddie Lake under his own volition this morning around 8:36 am. and had to be rescued according to Hightstown Borough Police Department, Sergeant Benjamin L. Miller.
Hightstown Police stated that on Saturday, January 23, 2021, at 8:36 a.m., officers were dispatched to the Peddie Lake, near the waterfalls, Main Street, for a male in the lake. Upon arrival, officers observed an elderly male subject standing, who appeared disoriented, in the lake; the officers immediately requested the Hightstown Fire Department’s water rescue unit and an ambulance for the extraction and care of the subject. The subject was assisted by fire personnel up a ladder and removed from the lake. The subject was transported to Princeton Medical Center by the Hightstown First Aid Squad for evaluation.
Responding the the scene, Hightstown Police Department, Hightstown Fire Company, Capital Health Paramedics, and Hightstown First Aid Squad. Robbinsville Township Fire Department, East Windsor and Plainsboro Fire Departments were dispatched but were not needed and turned around en-route.
TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Once again, Mercer County Sheriff Jack Kemler has issued a warning to area residents regarding telephone scammers posing as Mercer County Sheriff’s Officers. Over the past month, the Mercer County Sheriff’s Office has received numerous complaints about suspected phone scams asking residents for personal bank account information or cash payments. Some calls have reached residents throughout New Jersey and Pennsylvania. The scammers identify themselves as Mercer County Sheriff’s Officers along with fictitious badge numbers. The callers state they have an arrest warrant related to money laundering charges and need access to their bank accounts. The scammers also suggest meeting at a location and to bring cash for bail or fines. Otherwise, they will be taken into custody. “I can state with confidence the Mercer County Sheriff’s Office will never call anyone and ask for their bank account number or to meet in an odd location to pay bail or fines with cash,” said Sheriff Kemler.Unfortunately, it is difficult to crack down on telephone scammers because calls are often generated from phone banks located out of state. While the calls remain under investigation, the best advice is to exercise common sense. If a resident suspects a particular telephone call may be a scam, do not give out any personal information and simply hang up. Anyone who receives such a call and is uncertain of its validity should report the call to the Mercer County Sheriff’s Office at 609-989-6111.
ROBBINSVILLE-EAST WINDSOR TOWNSHIPS, NJ (MERCER)–Robbinsville Township firefighters responded to the 500 Block of Perrineville Road at 6:47 am for a car into a utility pole with injuries. Upon arrival of Robbinsville Police, fire and EMS the person was still in vehicle with wires one the vehicle. Jersey Central Power & Light JCP&L was notified and responded. The person was removed from the vehicle and transported to a local hospital.
At 8:28 am the Robbinsville Township Fire Department, Hightstown Fire Company, East Windsor First Aid, Robbinsville EMS responded to the New Jersey Turnpike for an overturned tractor trailer with reported entrapment. The accident happened in the north bound outer roadway (truck lanes) mile marker 66.0 about 1 mile prior to Exit 8 and blocked all the lanes of the outer roadway. When fire and EMS personnel arrived the driver was able to get out of the vehicle on their own power. Currently the roadway has reopened but one lane remains closed.
TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Mercer County plans on opening an COVID-19 vaccination site at CURE Insurance Arena in Trenton in partnership with Capital Health System. An additional vaccination site is planned at Mercer County Community College and will be managed by the County Health Officer’s Association. See full press rease below from Mercer County Executive Brian M. Hughes:
Dear Mercer County Community,
The State of New Jersey this week ramped up its COVID-19 vaccination efforts, and Mercer County is preparing to do the same. The County will open a vaccination site at CURE Insurance Arena in Trenton in partnership with Capital Health System, which will manage the site. The opening date is dependent on vaccine supply but a soft opening is planned next week.
We had a successful partnership with Capital Health during the COVID-19 testing program we established last spring, and I can’t think of a more fitting partner for this next phase of the pandemic response – the vaccination phase. Like other vaccination locations, this site will be for those eligible under the state’s phasing plan that is designed to ensure that those most at risk are prioritized.
Mercer County also is working on opening a vaccination site at Mercer County Community College that would be managed by the County Health Officers Association and utilize all of the resources and staffing available from the municipal and county health offices. The arena and MCCC vaccination locations will supplement, not replace, smaller sites including those currently being operated by municipal health departments and other health care facilities in Mercer County. If you have questions about the CURE Insurance Arena or MCCC vaccination sites, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
As of this morning, at least 7,342 vaccine doses had been administered in Mercer County, according to the state Department of Health. While we all want to see that number grow exponentially, we are simply not getting enough vaccine from the federal government, and we are using every single dose we receive.
I ask that everyone be patient throughout what will be a months-long vaccination process and continue to take basic preventive measures to reduce the spread of the virus, which is still rampant in our community and seemingly everywhere else. Wear a mask that covers your nose and mouth; keep a least 6 feet away from other people; practice good hand hygiene; avoid large gatherings; and stay home if you are sick.
Anyone can – and everyone should – pre-register to receive a vaccination by visiting the state’s online portal at https://covidvaccine.nj.gov. The state expects to have a consumer call center up and running soon to assist people without Internet access in scheduling appointments, and to help answer general inquiries and questions. Those who have pre-registered will be notified when they are eligible to make a vaccination appointment. The state is compiling a list of designated vaccination locations for eligible recipients. That list will continue to grow.
For more information on who is eligible, and how to get vaccinated if you are eligible, please visit the state’s COVID-19 Vaccine website.
In addition to vaccinations, Mercer County continues to respond to the pandemic through testing, contact tracing and support. The County, in partnership with Vault Health Services, is offering a free COVID-19 saliva test on the next two Tuesdays – Jan. 19 and 26 – at the CURE Insurance Arena in Trenton. For details, please visit the COVID-19 Testing page on the County website, where you’ll also find information on the County’s at-home testing program.
These are trying times but we will get through them. Let’s continue to support each other and keep each other safe. Let’s continue to work together.
EAST WINDSOR, NJ (MERCER)–Firefighters and other rescue personnel were dispatched to Exit 8 of the NJ Turnpike for an overturned vehicle with entrapment about 10:45 am Firefighters were already on the road and responding and reported the accident at 67.3 North Bound Inner Roadway as seen from the Etra Road Bridge. Firefighters entered the Turnpike at Exit 8 and responded to the scene and found at least three vehicles involved in an accident and one was overturned on its roof. Cranbury Fire Company was on scene and reported two minor injuries and recalled the rescue assignment due to no entrapment. Hightstown First Aid Squad was on scene but it was unclear if anyone was transported to the hospital.
Several departments returning from the earlier pickup truck fire responded to the accident including Cranbury, Hightstown. Robbinsville Township Fire Department also responded and was also recalled prior to arrival.
NJ State Police was on scene investigating the crash.
EAST WINDSOR, NJ (MERCER)–Firefighters were dispatched to the 800 Block of Perrineville Road around 10:15 am this morning for a pickup truck well involved in fire near a building. Firefighters responded from East Windsor Fire Companies 1 & 2, Hightstown, Cranbury and Monroe Township to the scene. The pickup truck was up a farm lane and close to a structure sending the additional apparatus. Firefighters quickly extinguished the fire and kept the fire from spreading to near by buildings. No further information was available.
HIGHTSTOWN, NJ (MERCER)–At 5:45 pm tonight Santa arrived from the North Pole in preparation for Christmas. Santa’s sleigh and reindeer were parked behind the firehouse where the reindeer enjoyed treats and fresh water provided in preparation for their return trip back to their home at the North Pole tonight.
While the reindeer were on break, Santa climbed aboard Ladder 41 for a trip around town with the members of Hightstown Engine Company #1. Santa wanted to visit the town’s children to let them know he is watching and will be returning on Christmas Eve. Santa stated that he had to scale things down this year because of social distancing because of COVID-19 and promised things should return to normal for next Christmas.
After the ride around town on the fire department’s ladder Santa quickly returned to his sleigh and raced back to the North Pole to get toys together for Christmas. Prior to departing, he mentioned that this is his busy season and has a tight time schedule but will return to different places in NJ over the next month.
On Sunday, November 22, 2020, East Windsor Police responded to Route 133 West near Route 571 for a report of a motor vehicle off the roadway engulfed in flames. Upon patrol arrival, the vehicle, a 2017 BMW was located down an embankment on the north side of the roadway at the curve just prior to the exit ramp for Route 571 West. The vehicle had driven off the roadway and struck a tree. The East Windsor and Hightstown fire companies extinguished the fire. The lone occupant Rashawn Young, 19, of Hamilton and driver was found deceased inside the vehicle.
The Traffic Safety Unit of the East Windsor Township Police Department and the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Officer Serious Collision Response Team are investigating the crash.
Responding agencies: East Windsor Township Police Department, Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office Serious Collision Response Team East Windsor Volunteer Fire Company No. 1, Station 42, East Windsor Volunteer Fire Company No. 2, Station 46 Hightstown Engine Company No. 1, East Windsor Rescue Squad #2
EAST WINDSOR, NJ (MERCER)–Around 5:45 pm the East Windsor Police received 9-1-1 calls reporting a vehicle off the road and on fire about 1/4 mile from Princeton Hightstown Road on Route 133 West Bound (Hightstown Bypass).
East Windsor Police, East Windsor and Hightstown Fire Companies and East Windsor First Aid and Rescue Squad along with Capital Health Paramedics responded to the scene. Upon arrival firefighters quickly knocked down the flames.
The crash is under investigation by the East Windsor Police Department. There is no other details available at this time.
No further information is available at this time. A press release most likely will follow sometime tomorrow so check back for an update.
TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Mercer County Executive Brian M. Hughes today announced that the County, in partnership with Vault Health Services, will offer free COVID-19 testing on Tuesday, Nov. 24, and Tuesday, Dec. 1, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the CURE Insurance Arena, 81 Hamilton Ave. The saliva test is available to County residents 14 years or older and anyone employed as a first responder or health care worker in Mercer County.
Those going to the arena for testing should use Parking Lot 2 off South Broad Street to access Gate A. Testing will be conducted in the arena concourse. Bring identification showing Mercer County residency and a smartphone or tablet if you have one. No prescription is necessary. Please avoid eating, drinking, chewing gum or smoking 30 minutes prior to taking the test.
Testing will be limited to 300 people on each of the two days but additional pop-up testing sites will be scheduled around the County in the near future.
If you want to avoid the lines, Mercer County also offers an at-home saliva test for COVID-19, which can be requested by visiting www.mercercares.org. If you need help with the online registration process, assistance will be available Tuesday at the arena.
The saliva collection test for COVID-19 has the same effectiveness as the nasal swab test. This test is performed under the supervision of our healthcare provider, Vault, through a video telehealth visit eliminating the risk of person-to-person exposure to the virus.
To register for your at-home testing kit, you must first fill out the form below to verify your Mercer County residency. Within 24-48 hours following your submission, you will receive a link to order your free kit on the Vault Health website. This is FREE to all Mercer County residents, and health insurance is not required but a claim will be submitted if are covered.
Please note the following:
There is no out of pocket cost for this test.
You must be a resident of Mercer County or employed as a first responder or health care worker in Mercer County.
Only persons over the age of 14 are eligible for this test. Persons under the age of 18 should have a parent or guardian complete the registration for them.
You will receive your code within 48 hours.
This is not an antibody test. This test is designed to determine if you currently are infected with COVID-19 and have the potential to infect others.
If your test is positive, or if you have symptoms, call your health care professional.
HIGHTSTOWN, NJ (MERCER)–Santa Claus will be coming to Hightstown on Friday Nov. 27th! Save the date and spread the word.
As with everything this year, our annual celebration will look a bit different.
While Santa and Mrs. Claus will be riding on the back of our Fire Truck as they usually do, there will not be any festivities at the fire house this year.
Instead, the route has changed to include more streets in town (see map for more details) so that you can wave to Santa and Mrs. Claus from the safety and comfort of your porch or street corner while maintaining social distance and staying closer to home.
Santa will leave the Fire house at approximately 5:45pm so listen for the sirens to indicate that he and his reindeer…oops…he and his firefighter friends are on the way to a street near you!
Please remember to wear masks and stay 6 feet apart from anyone who is not in your immediate household.
We hope you enjoy this Pandemic friendly version of Santa coming to our town!
Don’t forget that Christmas Tree and Wreath sales start on Sunday Nov. 22nd
NEWARK, NJ –An Ohio man who was out on bail for allegedly committing a bank robbery in the Chicago area and who is charged in New Jersey with seven bank robberies or attempted bank robberies will make his initial court appearance by videoconference today, U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito announced.
Tyler O’Toole, 23, of Cleveland, Ohio, was arrested in Queens, New York, on November 14, 2020. He is charged by complaint sworn out in the District of New Jersey on Nov. 4, 2020, with five counts of bank robbery and two counts of attempted bank robbery and is scheduled to have his initial appearance by videoconference this afternoon before U.S. Magistrate Judge Joseph A. Dickson.
According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:
O’Toole was arrested in Glenview, Illinois, on Aug. 20, 2020, and charged in federal court in the Northern District of Illinois with bank robbery. O’Toole was released on bail and placed on home detention with electronic location monitoring.
On Sept. 24, 2020, O’Toole removed his monitoring device, stole his mother’s blue 2018 Hyundai Elantra, and drove away. He later robbed, or attempted to rob, the following New Jersey banks:
Date Bank Location:
Oct. 8, 2020
Morris Plains, New Jersey
Oct. 8, 2020
Pompton Plains, New Jersey
Oct. 22, 2020
Aberdeen, New Jersey
Oct. 22, 2020
Bank of America
East Windsor, New Jersey
Oct. 27, 2020
Lawrence Township, New Jersey
Oct. 27, 2020
Mount Holly, New Jersey
Oct. 30, 2020
Runnemede, New Jersey
*attempted bank robbery
At each bank, O’Toole presented a note demanding cash from bank tellers. For example, during the Oct. 27, 2020, robbery of the Chase Bank in Lawrence Township, O’Toole handed the teller a manila envelope which stated:
• This is a robbery. Comply and Nobody gets hurt. • Give me 20’s 50’s 100’s • NO Trackers or Ink Packs • Put Money in THIS Envelope • Be fast, Act Normal
Each bank robbery or attempted bank robbery charge carries a maximum potential penalty of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
U.S. Attorney Carpenito credited special agents of the FBI’s Violent Crimes/Interstate Theft Task Force, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge George M. Crouch Jr. in Newark, with the investigation leading to the charges. He also thanked the FBI’s Westchester, County, New York Safe Streets Task Force; the Camden County, Monmouth County and Morris County prosecutor’s offices; and the Morris Plains Boro, Pompton Plains, Aberdeen Township, East Windsor Township, Lawrence Township, Mount Holly Township, Runnemede Borough, Medford, and Gloucester Township police departments for their assistance.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonathan W. Romankow of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Violent Crimes Unit in Newark.
The charges and allegations in the complaint are merely accusations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
NEWARK, NJ — The FBI Tweeted a few moments ago that bank robber James Tyler O’Toole. He was arrested in Queens yesterday.
A subject matching a similar description held up area banks including East Windsor and Lawrence Township. The FBI does not always comment on active investigations. Once in the hands of the US Attorney we should have more information on exact locations, expect another update soon.
EAST WINDSOR, NJ (MERCER)—Sergeant Lawrence Peele from the New Jersey State Police Public Information Bureau told MidJersey.News —
That a crash occurred at 11:53 p.m. last evening on the New Jersey Turnpike, northbound inner roadway in East Windsor Township, Mercer County.
Preliminary information indicates that in the area of milepost 66.8, a Lincoln Town Car was involved in a crash and was disabled in the roadway.
A Jeep Cherokee traveling northbound then struck the disabled Lincoln. Two rear seat passengers of the Lincoln were pronounced dead at the scene, the driver and front passenger sustained serious injuries. The driver of the Jeep sustained minor injuries.
The inner roadway was closed for approximately 6 hours.
EAST WINDSOR, NJ (MERCER)–A fiery crash left several with life threatening injuries tonight on the New Jersey Turnpike at Mile Marker 67 North Bound inner roadway (car lanes) prior to Exit 8. The crash was reported just before midnight at 11:56 pm., (November 12) reporting multiple vehicles involved and on fire with entrapment. Initially Robbinsville Township Fire Department and Hightstown Fire Company along with EMS from Robbinsville, Hightstown and Cranbury were sent to the scene. Upon arrival a MCI was called (Mass Casualty Incident) because of reports of how many injured additional paramedics from Capital Health and multiple ambulances were sent to the scene.
From radio reports there appeared to be at least 5 to 7 injures reported in the crash with 3 being life threating.
New Jersey State Police and the New Jersey Turnpike Authority have the inner roadway closed from the split in Florence to Exit 8 in the North Bound direction for the accident investigation and clean up. The New Jersey State Police Serious Accident Investigation Unit is investigating the crash.
This is a breaking news report and an email was sent to the NJ State Police Public Information Bureau for official details. Information contained in this preliminary breaking news report is unofficial and subject to change. Once official information is received the story will be updated with current information and any corrections made.
EAST WINDSOR-HIGHTSTOWN, NJ (MERCER)–The Hightstown Fire Department, Hightstown First Aid, Robbinsville Fire Department and EMS were sent to the NJ Turnpike at mile marker 67 north bound outer lanes for a crash just prior to Exit 8. Initially there was reported entrapment but upon fire department arrival the vehicle was found in a ditch and the driver was out of the vehicle. The driver was checked by the first aid squad and refused medical advice and was able to walk away on their own power.
New Jersey State Police was investigating the crash, no other information was available.