EWING TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–On Sunday, January 15, 2023, at 3:26 a.m. Ewing Police Officers were detailed to the Wawa convenience store at 1300 Silvia Street for a report of a shooting. The Ewing Police Criminal Investigations Bureau immediately began an investigation into the incident. Using information developed during the investigation, Detective Justin Ubry was able to identify one of the suspects with the assistance of Ewing Police Officers Michael Giovannetti and Joseph Toth, III., who recognized the suspect and his vehicle from previous encounters. An arrest warrant was subsequently signed against Zaccardi Mulkey, 23-year-old male from Trenton, NJ. Mulkey is charged with Aggravated Assault and Weapons Offenses. Mulkey was recently apprehended in Henry County, Georgia, where he is currently in custody while awaiting extradition to New Jersey to face his charges.
Ewing Police would like to acknowledge the following agencies for their assistance in the investigation: Trenton Police Department, Mercer County Sheriff’s Office, Mercer County Tactical Response Team, Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office, United States Marshall’s Office, and Henry County, Georgia Police Department.
The incident remains under investigation. If anyone has any information that may assist with the investigation, please contact Detective Ubry at 609-882-1313 extension 7590 or by email at email@example.com
Anyone with information may also fee free to contact the Ewing Police Tipline at 609-882-7530 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. The tip line should not be used to report crimes in progress or emergencies that require immediate response.
EWING TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–Ewing Police have identified Michael Roche, 60, of Hamilton as the victim of yesterday’s accident on Route 31.
Police, Fire and EMS responded to Pennington Road and Summerset Street at 5:48 p.m. for a motor vehicle crash involving a pedestrian. The investigation revealed that Michael Roche, 60, was struck by a single vehicle. He was transported to The Trauma Center at Captial Health Regional Medical Center where he later succumbed to his injuries.
The Ewing Township Police Department and the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office is investigation the crash. Any witnesses are asked to contact Detective Justin Quinlan at 609-882-1313 extension 7512 or by email at email@example.com Information can also be sent by text or the confidential tip line to 609-882-7530 or emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org
EWING (Mercer) – Two separate accidents – including one in which a person was critically injured – occurred within 90 minutes of each other and about a mile apart along Route 31 this evening (Wednesday, Jan. 25).
The first accident, which involved two vehicles, was reported just before 4:25 p.m. at the intersection of Route 31 (Pennington Road) and Carlton Avenue, in front of the main entrance to the College of New Jersey. One of the vehicles flipped and came to rest on its side. Police, firefighters and EMS personnel responded and found that both drivers had suffered only injuries and neither was trapped. While EMS personnel from Ewing and Pennington transported the injured to local hospitals, Ewing firefighters spread absorbent material on the road to contain mixed automotive fluids spilled from wrecked vehicles. Firefighters then stood by while the wreckage was removed by a tow truck.
The collision forced Ewing police to close Route 31 and TCNJ police to close the college’s main entrance. Those closures created lengthy traffic backups at the college’s other entrance on Green Lane.
At 5:48 p.m. Ewing police, EMS personnel and firefighters were dispatched to the intersection of Route 31 and Somerset Street for a reported “pedestrian struck.” Emergency workers arrived to find a critically injured person down in the roadway. CPR was performed on the scene before the accident victim was rushed by ambulance to the trauma center at Capital Health Regional Medical Center in Trenton. The elderly male pedestrian succumbed to his injuries at the hospital.
Both incidents are under investigation by Ewing police and the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Serious Collision Response Team.
Update on the pedestrian motor vehicle crash below from Ewing Police Department:
EWING TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–Firefighters from Ewing Township, Trenton Mercer County Airport and Pennington responded to a car carrier with at least five vehicles on fire this morning on Interstate 295 near Scotch Road. Firefighters quickly knocked down the flames and remained on scene for extensive overhaul. Traffic was reportedly backed up into Pennsylvania during the firefight and cleanup process. No other details are available at this time.
Photos by: Mercer County Airport Fire Department and Ewing Police
EWING TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–Ewing Township Police reported that on Sunday, January 15, 2023, at 3:26 a.m., Ewing Township Police Officers responded to the Wawa at 1300 Silvia Street on the report of a shooting. When Officers arrived, it was determined that an argument ensued between 3 or 4 Wawa patrons that arrived separately. Wawa employees intervened and asked that parties involved to exit the store. One male party exited the store, however, he returned after a short time. When the male reentered the store, one of the parties that remained in the store fired a weapon in his direction. The male that was reentering the store then returned fire. It is not believed that anyone was struck by gunfire. Police believe that there is any reason to believe that there is any active threat to the community.
The incident is currently under investigation by Ewing Township Police Department Detective Justin Ubry. If anyone has any information that may assist with the investigation, please contact Detective Urby at 609-882-1313 x 7590 or by email email@example.com You may also contact the Ewing Police Tipline at 609-882-7530 or email firstname.lastname@example.org Police say that the tip line should not be used to report crimes in progress or emergencies that require immediate response.
EWING TOWNSHIP (MERCER)– One person was badly injured in a fire that gutted a home near the township’s border with Trenton this morning.
The injured individual, whose identity was not released by authorities but who is believed to be a resident of the home, was rushed by Ewing Township EMS to Capital Health Regional Medical Center in Trenton. The person was then reportedly transferred by medical helicopter to the burn center at Cooperman Barnabas Medical Center in Livingston.
Ewing Township career firefighters and volunteers from the Prospect Heights and West Trenton fire companies were dispatched to the blaze at 210 Parkway Avenue at 9:12 a.m. Two crews of Ewing firefighters were already on the road, returning from a previous false fire alarm activation on Buttonwood Drive, and were able to quickly respond to Parkway Avenue.
When firefighters arrived, the second floor of the dwelling was fully engulfed in fire, with flames shooting from the front windows. Luckily, the injured individual was reportedly able to escape from the burning house and was outside when firefighters arrived.
With Parkway Avenue forming part of the municipal border between Ewing and Trenton, Trenton Fire Department also sent crews from Engines 1, 8, and 9 and Ladder 1 to the scene to help battle the blaze.
Firefighters worked under the direction of Prospect Heights Fire Co. Chief Doug Brower. The blaze was officially declared under control at 9:48 a.m. The adjacent home at 208 Parkway Avenue sustained some siding damage from radiant heat but was otherwise saved from damage.
Investigators from Ewing Police Department, Ewing Fire Department, the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office, and Mercer County Fire Marshal’s Office are investigating the cause of the blaze.
TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Mercer County Prosecutor Angelo J. Onofri reported today this his Cyber Crimes Unit is investigating recent telephone scams where callers spoof the non-emergency telephone numbers for various police departments within Mercer County in an attempt to scam residents. The scammers falsely claim the resident has a warrant for their arrest. As a reminder, law enforcement will never ask for payment of any type over the phone nor will they ask for personal identifying information that could be used for fraudulent purposes. Law enforcement and government agencies will also never ask you to pay by unusual methods, such as gift cards, wire transfers or cryptocurrency.
Scammers research potential victims on the internet and social media. Then they call and deceive their victims into thinking the callers are law enforcement officers, prosecutors or police employees. Scammers may spoof a law enforcement telephone number, falsely showing on the victim’s caller ID. They threaten victims with arrest for outstanding warrants or other legal issues.
Should you receive a call from a police department within Mercer County or the Prosecutor’s Office, please confirm who you are speaking with. If you believe you received a scam telephone call, hang up and call the number back. If the call is legitimate, you’ll be connected with a police dispatcher or receptionist who can verify the caller’s identity. Report any scam calls to your local law enforcement agency. Please share this message with your family and friends, especially the elderly, to help prevent phone scams.
EWING TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–A Florida man was arrested by police on Sunday, Dec. 18, after Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officers stopped him with a loaded .380 caliber handgun in his carry-on bag at the Trenton-Mercer Airport security checkpoint. The man also was in possession of two loaded gun magazines and a pellet gun. Like firearms, pellet guns and other realistic replica guns are not permitted through a TSA security checkpoint.
It was the first gun caught at the airport checkpoint this year. One gun also was stopped at the checkpoint in 2021 and a single gun also was detected in 2020.
“Our officers are good at their jobs and are focused on their mission—especially during the busy holiday travel period,” said Thomas Carter, TSA’s Federal Security Director for New Jersey. “Not only was he arrested by the Mercer County Sheriff’s Department, but this individual also faces a stiff financial civil penalty—a penalty for carrying a weapon that was recently increased to a maximum of $15,000.”
TSA has details on how to properly travel with a firearm posted on its website.
Bringing a gun to an airport checkpoint carries a federal civil penalty because TSA reserves the right to issue a civil penalty to travelers who have guns and gun parts with them at a checkpoint. Civil penalties for bringing a handgun into a checkpoint can stretch into thousands of dollars, depending on mitigating circumstances. This applies to travelers with or without concealed gun carry permits because even though an individual may have a concealed carry permit, it does not allow for a firearm to be carried onto an airplane. The complete list of civil penalties is posted online. Additionally, if a traveler with a gun is a member of TSA PreCheck®, that individual will lose their TSA PreCheck privileges.
Firearm possession laws vary by state and locality and passengers should do their homework to make sure that they are not violating any local firearm laws. Travelers should also contact their airline as they may have additional requirements for traveling with firearms and ammunition.
EWING TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–State Farm and the Roc Solid Foundation recently teamed up to provide a donated playset for Charlotte Craven, a 3-year-old girl in Ewing undergoing treatment for High Risk B-Cell ALL. Donated playsets help bring normalcy to children undergoing cancer treatments and provide a safe place for them to play and forgot about their illness, hospital visits and treatments. Additionally, although many children have access to public playgrounds, it’s often difficult for kids with comprised immune systems to play in public settings, especially during Covid.
After the Craven family received their playset pieces, State Farm learned they needed help building the structure. Local State Farm agents and Ewing police officers recently showed up at the Craven’s house – on Charlotte’s 3rd birthday – to build the playset and help Charlotte begin creating many, happy memories in her backyard. The playset build was a surprise for Charlotte and her younger sister, Ella.
“It was exciting to watch Charlotte see the playset for the first time in her backyard,” says State Farm Agent Lenny LoPresti. “This family is already going through a lot, so it was comforting to know we were able to help them with this project. We are also extremely grateful to the Ewing Police Department who showed up with relatively short notice.”
“When Charlotte woke up the morning after the build, the first thing she did was look outside and say, ‘Oh good! My playset is still there!,’” adds Charlotte’s mother, Alison.
The Roc Solid Foundation mission is to build hope for kids fighting cancer. The playset program is designed for kids ages 1 – 9 who are in active treatment for pediatric cancer.
About Roc Solid: Roc Solid Foundation builds hope for kids fighting cancer through the power of play. The organization is best known for its two major initiatives: surprising kids with brand new play sets and providing Roc Solid Ready Bags to families when they first hear the devastating news that their child has cancer. The organization has constructed more than 500 play sets across the country through partnerships with children’s hospitals – including those in New Jersey.
EWING TOWNSHIP (Mercer) – Ewing firefighters made quick work of bringing a smoky basement blaze under control this afternoon (Tuesday, Nov. 15). The fire involved a one-story home on Federal City Road, between Bunker Hill and Bull Run roads, where Ewing, Lawrence and Hopewell townships all meet. Dispatched about 4:35 p.m. in response to multiple 911 calls reporting smoke coming from the roof of the home, Ewing Township Fire Department personnel arrived on scene and quickly confirmed there was a working fire in the basement. Multiple hoselines were deployed, entry was forced into the home, and the hoselines were placed in service to extinguish the flames in the basement. Mutual aid firefighters from Lawrence Township and Pennington Borough assisted with completing searches of the smoke-filled home to confirm no one was inside and with ventilation efforts to clear smoke from the residence once the fire was extinguished. A Lawrence Township EMS ambulance crew stood by on scene but there were no reported injuries. The cause of the fire was under investigation by Ewing Township police and fire officials.
TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–In the wake of numerous issues with voting and counting on Election Day, challenges that are still under investigation, Mercer County Executive Brian M. Hughes is calling for a thorough public review of what went wrong and a comprehensive overhaul of the elections process in Mercer County.
“After issues in the last two elections, I have come to the conclusion that we must fundamentally change the management of the election process in Mercer County because it is clearly not working,” the County Executive said. “There are legal limits to what I can do as County Executive but rest assured that I will do everything within my power to ensure the integrity of elections in Mercer County and will tolerate nothing less.”
In Mercer County, three separate entities, the Board of Elections, the Superintendent of Elections, and the Office of the County Clerk each plays a role in elections. Board of Elections commissioners are appointed by the respective County Chairs of the Republican and Democratic Parties, the Superintendent of Elections is an appointee of the Governor, and the County Clerk is an elected position.
“I am happy that Mercer County Clerk Paula Sollami-Covello requested that the County Prosecutor look into the election. But we also need a more thorough and public review. We’ve got too many people in control and the quality of our elections has suffered as a result, undermining peoples’ faith in the democratic process,” Mr. Hughes said.
Moving forward, County Executive Hughes proposes the following:
Request a special meeting of the Commissioner Board to bring together the Clerk, Superintendent and Election Board Chair explain to the public what went wrong.
Reform and simplify our election process by merging and unifying the Office of the Superintendent and the Board into one, and having an experienced Executive Director oversee our elections.
Call on legislators to enact changes that will allow Mercer County to reform our system.
Pledge any county resources needed to ensure every vote is counted and help get to the bottom of what went wrong hasten and conclude investigation.
“I pledge to you that we will get to the bottom of this and that every vote will be counted,” Mr. Hughes said. “I have listened to the people of Mercer County and have spoken with election officials, and we are committed to finding out how we can improve the election process and to prevent future incidents as the one on Election Day.”
In Mercer County, the Office of the County Executive does not supervise the Board, their offices, nor does it have jurisdiction. The board is responsible for selecting polling places, training board workers, receiving and counting vote-by-mail ballots, and counting and certifying provisional ballots. The Superintendent of Elections handles voter registration, renews registration records, investigates provisional ballots, and is the custodian of voting machines. The County Clerk designs and prints all election ballots, processes vote by mail applications, and officially certifies the election results.
File photo: Mercer County Executive Brian M. Hughes
File photo: Robbinsville Township Mayor Dave Fried
Robbinsville Township Mayor Dave Fried said in a Facebook post:
“Regarding the events of Election Day, here is what we know so far.
Either the machine scanners did not work, or the ballots were printed incorrectly and the machines did their jobs and correctly spit them out as invalid. An investigation is reportedly under way, and Robbinsville will join other elected officials across Mercer County to see that the investigation is complete and transparent.
Let me be clear: I am not blaming anyone. Honestly, I do not know how this happened. Pointing fingers without all the facts is not productive. We do know that this is the second straight year the County process did not work as it should have, and I am not happy with much of what I saw.
One of the basic tenets of our democracy is the right to vote, and that every vote will be counted.
As of today, it appears our District 5 ballots (Library) have been found after having been misplaced. That information was given directly to our Municipal Clerk Michele Seigfried from the County.
Just a quick note about our clerk’s office. Michele and her team of Deputy Clerk Kaitlyn Macellaro and Sandy DeLorenzo performed exceptionally under extremely difficult conditions this past week. I cannot thank them enough for their service to our Township. The same goes for our Administration team, led by B.A. Joy Tozzi, each of whom worked all hours of the day and night in the chaotic aftermath of Election Day.
Over in Princeton, it seems they discovered ballots still in their machines. During in-person voting on Election Day, two slots for placing ballots were used. The first was the so-called emergency slot. This was used in the early part of the day because officials had hoped the scanner problems could be fixed before polls closed. As the day went on, that emergency bin became full and the scanners were removed so the main bin could be used. They discovered Princeton’s ballots were still in some of those containers since both sides were not emptied. It also appears that the documentation of the chain of custody regarding our ballots was quite poor, allowing the ballots to be apparently misplaced for a time.
The courts have ordered all the machines returned to the Mercer County Board of Elections for inspection to ensure there are no more ballots in those machines, including the ones deployed in Robbinsville.
I DO NOT believe there was any type of fraud, and I DO NOT believe there are any conspiracies at work here. I do believe mistakes were made at a time in our nation when it can ill-afford to stumble on Election Day.
We have spent millions of dollars on these machines and ballots, and they clearly did not work as advertised. It is time to reassess and come up with a better system. Those of you who voted early did not seem to have any issues. Perhaps we need to consider moving entirely in that direction. I will be attending all upcoming Mercer County Commissioner’s meetings until we have a real and fortified plan. Together, I am hopeful we will come up with a solution. Robbinsville has no intention of paying for this process unless real change is implemented.
I have no reason to believe, even with ballots that may or may not still be out there, that our local results will change.
Thus, I sincerely congratulate our three new Board of Education members – Jeffrey Pierro, Raghu Nandan and Peter Oehlberg. I wish each of you the best of luck, and I am sorry your first election was fraught with so much turmoil.
I have always said putting your name on a ballot is one of the most difficult – but potentially rewarding things – a person can do. Although no candidate should have to wait days for results in 2022, each of you earned your rightful place among your other BOE members.
While Ballot Question #1, which sought to combine our Planning and Zoning Boards into a consolidated Land Use Board, did pass, Ballot Question #2 regarding an increase in our Open Space tax to preserve more land and slow development did not. I know times are tough. That is why we put items such as these questions on the ballot. Sometimes we think we know what the residents want, but this process helps us know for certain.”
TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Mercer County Clerk Paula Sollami Covello told MidJersey.News in an email, “Although this is under the board of elections, I have been informed that they were all found by them and are being counted.”
As reported yesterday by MidJersey.news a bag of Robbinsville emergency ballots went missing, and also 3 Princeton districts also appeared to be missing as of this morning.
The Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office Spokesperson Casey DeBlasio, told MidJersey.news in an email, “I can confirm the county clerk did reach out to the prosecutor today. We are reviewing her concerns to determine what further action should be taken.”
MidJersey.news did reach out to Mercer County Board of Elections this morning and have not received a reply yet.
Check back with MidJersey.news we will update as information becomes available.
*Results are not official until all votes are counted and certified. This includes ballots cast by mail, provisional, and ballots requiring a signature cure. These first two reports above must be ADDED for a cumulative total (until further notice)! –Note the PDF files below and the above link must be added together to get the most accurate until updated by County Clerk’s Office
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–Robbinsville Township reported on social media that due to a Mercer County-wide system outage, all voting machines are currently down in each district across the County.
Voters can still report to their respective polling locations and vote on a standard ballot and insert their ballot into the “emergency slot” in the machine. However, Mercer County officials will be unable to tally those votes tonight and are working to fix the system issue.
8:00 a.m. UPDATE:
Mercer County Clerk Paula Sollami Covello posted on Facebook that there is a glitch with the Dominion scanners. Voters can still vote by completing their ballots and placing them in the top of the scanning machine in the slot where the emergency ballots are placed. Everyone can vote manually, so rest assured no one will be disenfranchised.
8:08 a.m. UPDATE:
Mercer County reports: The Board of Elections has advised the county of issues with voting machines. Poll workers will be on hand to walk voters through the process. The board is working with Dominion, the machine maker, to resolve the issue.
“All votes cast in this General Election will be scanned on high capacity scanners by the Mercer County Board of Elections, at their central location, instead of at the polling locations by the voters. The Board of Elections is a bipartisan commission. Fortunately, we have hand-marked paper ballot system.
The Mercer County Clerk’s Office does not oversee voting machines or the voting equipment, but all three offices work together to make sure that the process is secure and transparent.
We made it through Hurricane Sandy, through 2020 and we will make it through this one too and no one will be disenfranchised.”
Update from the Mercer County Superintendent of Elections Nathaniel Walker
November 8, 2022 – 2 p.m.
Soon after polls opened this morning, Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022, poll workers became aware of an issue with the voting machine scanners. Voters are being asked to fill out the ballot as they normally would. A contingency plan is in place for all ballots cast at all locations to be scanned at the secure Board of Elections office.
Again, ballots will be scanned just as they would at the polling location. Every ballot that has been cast will be counted, no voter will be disenfranchised, and the integrity of the election is intact and secure.
Additionally, provisional ballots are available to those who would prefer to vote provisionally. A provisional ballot can be obtained at a voter’s polling location.
Further information will be reported as it becomes known.
– Nathaniel Walker, Mercer County Superintendent Of Elections
Proposed Legislation and Administrative Action Will Work Together to Decrease Auto Theft Across the State
November 7, 2022
EWING TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–Governor Phil Murphy, alongside Senate President Nick Scutari and Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin, today announced his support for a series of legislative proposals and administrative actions to combat auto theft in New Jersey. Today’s announcement builds upon steps taken earlier this year, which have already proven to have an impact. Auto thefts in September of this year were down 14 percent from September of last year. And in October, auto thefts were down 12 percent from October of last year.
“I am grateful for the collaborative work that has been done across government in partnership with law enforcement at the state and local levels to combat crime in our state,” said Governor Murphy. “Today’s steps, which include increasing penalties for persistent auto theft offenders and criminalizing certain conduct related to auto theft tools and catalytic converters, will strengthen this administration’s efforts to reverse the uptick in vehicle theft we have witnessed over the past few years. However, we also ask that our residents take additional measures to protect themselves from auto theft. If you cannot park your car in a closed and locked garage, make sure that your vehicle is locked and that the key fob is with you.”
The Governor announced his support for a series of legislative measures to combat auto theft. Some versions of these measures have already been introduced, and the Governor looks forward to working with legislative leadership and the sponsors to advance these reforms through the legislative process. The Governor proposed:
Establishing a persistent auto theft offender statute, which would give state and local prosecutors the option to seek more serious criminal consequences for those who have been repeatedly found guilty of stealing cars.
Making possession and distribution of certain auto theft tools a crime.
Imposing criminal penalties for the failure to comply with certain guidelines in the sale and purchase of catalytic converters.
Investing in enhanced pretrial services, which will reduce the risk from individuals who are awaiting trial. This will include:
Pretrial monitoring by law enforcement.
Expansion of the use of house arrest paired with location monitoring.
Providing additional resources related to substance abuse, mental health, and housing insecurity.
The Governor also announced that the New Jersey Motor Vehicle Commission (MVC) will start working to add a check box to vehicle registration paperwork allowing residents to “opt in” to a program that automatically permits law enforcement to track participating registered vehicles if a vehicle is ever stolen. Additionally, MVC will focus on messaging the importance to new drivers of safely handling key fobs by not leaving them inside the car or stored in their home too close to the car.
“The Murphy Administration continues to take a comprehensive approach to keeping New Jersey residents safe. Particularly when it comes to combating the rise in auto thefts, we are deploying every tool possible–creative legislation, technological investments, and traditional enforcement. Public safety will always be our top priority,” said New Jersey Attorney General Matthew Platkin.
“Auto theft not only victimizes the owner of the vehicle, but it can also victimize the whole community. Stolen vehicles are often used in the commission of crimes and can be found driving recklessly on our roadways creating a dangerous environment for everyone,” said Colonel Patrick J. Callahan, Superintendent of the New Jersey State Police. “The support Governor Murphy has provided with the additional resources have proven to be pivotal in our effort to combat this national issue. Those resources added with the new legislative and administrative steps shows this state’s commitment to supporting not only law enforcement but it’s commitment to the safety of all New Jersey residents.”
“I can only commend the all-hands-on-deck approach that Governor Murphy has taken to combat the rise in auto thefts in New Jersey,” said Motor Vehicle Commission Acting Chief Administrator Latrecia Littles-Floyd. “The initiatives announced today will give law enforcement a new tool to help track down stolen vehicles and boost public awareness about the importance of securing key fobs. Working closely with our partners in law enforcement, we will continue to maximize our efforts at MVC to help reduce vehicle thefts.”
“The alarming increase in auto thefts threatens the property and the safety of New Jersey residents in their communities,” said Senate President Scutari. “These crimes are especially disturbing because they’re so close to home. Criminals are stealing cars right out of people’s driveways and garages. It’s crucial we take additional steps to deter car thieves and support police departments throughout the state.”
“Car thefts are plaguing communities across our state,” said Assembly Speaker Craig J. Coughlin. “We must protect public safety and ensure justice is delivered for the sake of all New Jersey families and our law enforcement. Every community deserves peace of mind. As we step up our efforts to mitigate, disincentivize and dismantle car theft rings, I applaud the ongoing response of the Attorney General and I remind folks to please stay vigilant.”
“In response to a recent increase in automobile thefts across the state, I am proud to stand with Governor Murphy in taking swift and comprehensive action to combat this issue,” said Senator Linda Greenstein. “As Chairwoman of the Law and Public Safety Committee, safeguarding our residents’ property and upholding community safety and security standards, is of the utmost importance.”
“With support from Governor Murphy, Attorney General Platkin, Speaker Coughlin, Senate President Scutari and law enforcement agencies, the Assembly Law and Public Safety Committee will be holding a public hearing to discuss combatting auto theft. We plan to isolate the problem, hear from our community and stakeholders to find solutions to address this issue. It is our responsibility in the legislature to ensure our communities are safe from crime, and rest easy knowing their representatives are working to solve the problem of automotive theft,” said Assemblyman Bill Spearman.
Earlier this year, Governor Murphy announced a $10 million investment in automated license plate recognition (ALPR) technology to reduce violent crime and auto theft in New Jersey through the federal American Rescue Plan (ARP) State Fiscal Recovery Fund.
In addition, Attorney General Platkin announced in March that additional resources would be allocated to grow the Auto Theft Task Force (ATTF). Since then, both the New Jersey State Police (NJSP) and the Division of Criminal Justice (DCJ) have added additional detectives and prosecutors to the ATTF. $125,000 in federal Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) funds were also immediately provided to bolster the resources and capabilities of the ATTF, including law enforcement personnel and equipment purchases.
Attorney General Platkin has also revised the police pursuit policy to explicitly permit the pursuit of stolen cars, among other efforts.
Back on September 22, 2021, four cases of Legionnaires’ disease were reported in Hamilton Township, Mercer County between May-August 2021, along with an additional reported case from November 2020. On August 29, 2022 Two cases of Legionnaires’ disease were reported in August 2022 from the section of Hamilton Township, Mercer County, served by Trenton Water Works (TWW). Two additional cases were reported, respectively in April 2022 and December 2021. Of the four, one individual has died.
Today the NJ Department of Health made this announcement: The presence of Legionella bacteria was identified in water samples collected from more than half of 30 homes within several municipalities served by Trenton Water Works (TWW), the New Jersey Department of Health (NJDOH) announced today. This includes homes from Trenton, Ewing, and parts of Lawrence and Hopewell Township served by TWW.
The testing was conducted in September 2022 following the detection of Legionella, the bacteria that causes Legionnaires’ disease, in several homes that were voluntarily tested within the Hamilton Township area served by TWW in July 2022. The homes tested in Hamilton Township were part of an ongoing investigation to determine potential causes of Legionnaires’ disease previously detected in Hamilton Township, with five cases including one death reported since December 2021. The most recent case was reported to health in September 2022.
To determine if other municipalities served by TWW were affected, health officials recruited an additional 30 homeowners from across the TWW distribution area, focusing on areas outside of Hamilton Township, to voluntarily have their homes tested for Legionella. NJDOH has notified all volunteer homeowners of the results from this sampling.
Legionnaires’ disease is a type of pneumonia that people can get after breathing in aerosolized water (small droplets of water in the air) containing Legionella bacteria. Individuals cannot get Legionnaires’ disease by drinking water that has Legionella. Though uncommon, people can get sick when water containing Legionella is aspirated into the lungs while drinking (“goes down the wrong pipe”). NJDOH receives approximately 250-350 reports of Legionnaires’ disease each year throughout New Jersey.
NJDOH is now urging that all residents and building owners who receive water from TWW to take actions to reduce the risk of Legionella growth in their household and building plumbing. These recommendations are available below.
It is not known if individuals with Legionella detected in their homes are more likely to develop Legionnaires’ disease. While it remains rare for a healthy person who is exposed to Legionella to become sick with Legionnaires’ disease, people who are 50 years or older, especially those who smoke, or those with certain medical conditions, including weakened immune systems, chronic lung disease or other chronic health conditions, are at increased risk.
Symptoms of Legionnaires’ disease include cough, shortness of breath, fever, muscle aches, and headaches, which are similar to symptoms caused by other respiratory infections, including COVID-19. Legionnaires’ disease can be fatal but is treatable with antibiotics. It is important that anyone who thinks they have symptoms of Legionnaires’ disease contact their health care provider and seek medical evaluation immediately.
Health officials are urging healthcare providers to collect lower respiratory specimens for Legionella PCR and/or culture, in conjunction with use of the urinary antigen test, when suspecting Legionnaires’ disease. This is especially important among residents who receive water from TWW. The urinary antigen test is the most common diagnostic method but can only detect Legionella pneumophila serogroup 1. PCR and culture of lower respiratory specimens can detect all Legionella species and serogroups.
NJDOH continues to partner with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) and TWW to investigate factors that may be promoting the growth of Legionella bacteria and to evaluate remedial actions that can be taken to reduce Legionella in the system.
Following NJDEP’s finding of significant concerns with TWW’s operations and management, including intermittent failures to fully maintain treatment processes, monitor water quality, employ adequately trained operating personnel, and invest in required maintenance and capital needs such as upgrades to aging infrastructure, Governor Phil Murphy NJDEP Commissioner Shawn M. LaTourette issued a Unilateral Administrative Order that will, among other things, facilitate the immediate deployment of a capacity-building force comprised of managerial and technical experts who will focus on improving routine operations and maintenance, as well as resolving immediate capital needs.
According to NJDOH, individuals, particularly those at high risk, can follow recommended steps to decrease the risk of Legionella exposure and best practices to limit the growth of Legionella in household water systems and devices:
Avoid high-risk activities. If you are at an increased risk for Legionnaires’ disease, consider avoiding hot tubs, decorative fountains, power washing, or similar activities, which may generate increased amounts of aerosols or mist. A conversation with your health care provider may help you assess your individual level of risk based on underlying health conditions and co-morbidities. Your health care provider may recommend that you consider installing specialty biological 0.2-micron filters on your showerhead if you are severely immunocompromised and receive water from Trenton Water Works.
Maintain in-home medical equipment. If using medical equipment that requires water for use or cleaning such as non-steam generating humidifiers, CPAP or BiPAP machines, nasal irrigation devices such as Neti Pots, and attachments for nebulizers, follow manufacturer’s instructions for use and maintenance. This often includes using sterile water instead of tap water in the device.
Clean and/or replace your showerheads and faucet aerators (screens) per manufacturer’s instructions whenever buildup is visible. This is particularly important if you haven’t cleaned your showerheads or faucet aerators recently. Cleaning might require you to remove the showerhead and hose and soak in a solution (such as white vinegar or a bleach solution) to remove buildup. If using chemicals, follow instructions found on the back of the bottle for safe use.
Keep your water heater set to a minimum of 120o This temperature will reduce Legionella growth and avoid potential for scalding (hot water burns). Setting the heater to a higher temperature may better control Legionella growth, especially if you have household members at increased risk for Legionnaires’ disease. However, if the temperature is set to greater than 120o F, make sure you take extra precautions to mix cold and hot water at the faucet and shower to avoid scalding. If you have household members at increased risk of scalding, such as young children or older adults, you may consider installing a thermostatic mixing valve. A mixing valve allows your water to be stored at a higher temperature within your water heater to help kill bacteria while eliminating concerns with water being too hot at sinks or showers. If you decide to install a mixing valve, be sure to follow manufacturer’s instructions for routine cleaning and maintenance to avoid bacteria growth within the valve. Consider consulting with a licensed plumbing professional and ensure you are following your local codes and ordinances for home plumbing repairs.
After cleaning showerheads and faucet aerators and increasing the temperature of the water heater, thoroughly flush the water at each tap (e.g., sink, showerhead) for 20 minutes. Try to minimize exposure to splashing and mist generation, for example, by leaving the room while the water is running.
Conduct routine flushing. Sinks and shower taps that are not used often can increase the risk of Legionellagrowth in other areas of the home. Let your faucets and showers run for at least three minutes when they have been out of use for more than a week. Minimize exposure to splashing and mist generation, for example, by leaving the room while the water is running. Additionally, you may consider flushing your water following any water disruption to your home, such as low pressure or discoloration, resulting from a water main break or nearby hydrant flushing.
Follow manufacturer’s instructions for maintaining your water heater and expansion tank, including periodic flushing, draining, and removal of sediment. If manufacturer’s instructions are unavailable, seek advice from a licensed professional.
Clean and/or replace all water filters per manufacturer’s instructions. All whole-house (e.g., water softeners) and point-of-use filters (e.g., built-in refrigerator filters) must be properly maintained.
Drain garden hoses and winterize hose bibs. Detach and drain the hose, shut the water valve off inside the home, and drain the pipe when not in use for the season.
Follow manufacturer’s instructions for maintaining your hot tub.Ensure disinfectant levels (e.g., chlorine) and maintenance activities (e.g., cleaning, scrubbing, replacing the filter and water) are followed. For more information, be sure to review CDC’s recommendations for residential hot tub owners.
Operate and maintain your indoor and outdoor decorative fountains according to manufacturer’s instructions to limit your exposure to Legionella. Household members at increased risk for Legionnaires’ disease should avoid exposure to decorative fountains. If manufacturer’s instructions for cleaning and maintenance are not available, minimum cleaning frequency recommendations can be found in CDC’s Legionella Control Toolkit.
Remove, shorten, or regularly flush existing dead legs. Plumbing renovations can lead to the creation of dead legs, a section of capped pipe that contains water but has no flow (or is infrequently used). For future renovations, ensure your plumber avoids creating dead legs.
RECOMMENDED ACTIONS FOR BUILDING OWNERS
Complete this quick yes/no worksheetto determine if your building, or certain devices in your building, need a Water Management Program. Resources to help you develop a Water Management Program and for Legionella control in common sources of exposure are available at NJDOH’s Legionella website.
Store hot water at temperatures above 140°F and ensure hot water in circulation does not fall below 120°F (or at highest temperature allowable by local regulations and codes). Install thermostatic mixing valves as close as possible to fixtures to prevent scalding while permitting circulating hot water temperatures above 120°.
Clean and maintain water system components.This includes devices such as thermostatic mixing valves, aerators, showerheads, hoses, filters, water heaters, storage tanks, and expansion tanks, regularly per manufacturer instructions.
Flush hot and cold water at all points of use (faucets, showers, drinking fountains) at least weekly to replace the water that has been standing in the pipes. Healthcare settings and facilities that house vulnerable populations should flush at least twice a week.
Remove dead legs or, where unavoidable, make them as short as possible. Where a dead leg (a section of pipe capped off with little or no water flow) cannot be avoided, it should be flushed regularly to avoid water stagnation. This may require the installation of a drain valve.
Monitor water quality parameters such as temperature, disinfectant residuals, and pH regularly. Adjust the frequency of monitoring based on stability of values. For example, increase frequency of monitoring if there is a high degree of measurement variability. Pay particular attention to water quality parameters following a water disruption event, such as low pressure or discoloration, resulting from a water main break or nearby hydrant flushing.
Safely operate and conduct regular maintenance of cooling towers to protect staff, visitors, and the adjacent community from exposure to Legionella. Use a Water Management Program to establish, track, and improve operation and maintenance activities.
Follow recommendations from the NJ Department of Health when reopening your facility following a prolonged shutdown or reduced operation due to the COVID-19 Pandemic. Recommendations are available at: https://bit.ly/3CG2s8S
ABOUT LEGIONNAIRES’ DISEASE AND LEGIONELLA
Legionnaires’ disease is a type of pneumonia (lung infection) caused by Legionella bacteria. Legionella is a type of bacteria found naturally in freshwater environments such as lakes and streams and becomes a health concern when it enters and grows inside human-made water systems. People can get Legionnaires’ disease by breathing in aerosolized (small droplets) water containing Legionella. Aerosolized water can come from plumbing systems and devices such as cooling towers (part of the cooling system for large buildings), hot tubs, cooling misters, and decorative fountains. Less commonly, people can get sick by aspiration of tap water containing Legionella. This happens when water accidently goes into the lungs while drinking (“goes down the wrong pipe”). People at increased risk of aspiration include those with swallowing difficulties. Home A/C units do not use water to cool, so these home units do not aerosolize water and are not a risk for Legionella growth. Legionnaires’ disease is generally not spread person to person. Additional information regarding Legionnaires’ disease and Legionella can be located at NJDOH’s website.
Follow the New Jersey Department of Health on Twitter @njdeptofhealth, Facebook /njdeptofhealth, Instagram @njdeptofhealth and LinkedIn /company/njdeptofhealth.
EWING TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER) – Several people, including a young child, were injured in a collision between a pickup truck and a sport utility vehicle that occurred along North Olden Avenue this evening (Friday, Oct. 14). Ewing Township police, EMS personnel and firefighters, along with Capital Health System paramedics, were alerted to the crash in front of the Wendy’s restaurant in the 1700 block of North Olden Avenue just minutes before 9 p.m. When emergency crews arrived on scene they found at least three adults trapped in the wreckage of the two vehicles. A child was also inside one of the autos. According to initial radio reports, it appeared that the child – described as an infant – had not been riding in an approved child car seat and, as a result, was unrestrained when the crash occurred. Additional ambulances from Trenton and Lawrence and more paramedics were called in to care for the injured. Ewing firefighters used hydraulic rescue tools to cut apart the vehicles to free the trapped victims. Once extricated from the wreckage, the victims was rushed to the regional trauma center in Trenton. North Olden Avenue was closed between Prospect Street and Parkside Avenue as a result of the crash. At the time of this report, Ewing Township police were still investigating the circumstances of the accident and no additional details were available.
TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Following a months-long compliance evaluation of conditions affecting Trenton Water Works (TWW), Governor Phil Murphy, Commissioner of Environmental Protection Shawn M. LaTourette, and Trenton Mayor Reed Gusciora today announced the launch of a new Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) initiative to better support and improve TWW. Through this initiative, the State will work with the City to enhance TWW’s technical and managerial capacity with the goal of improving the operations and maintenance of TWW to ensure that the system reliably produces safe drinking water that meets all requirements of the New Jersey Safe Drinking Water Act.
Despite many recent efforts at the local level to improve operating conditions and advance long-overdue capital improvements at TWW, the system continues to struggle in maintaining compliance with regulatory obligations and requirements. To ensure that maintenance and operational needs crucial to the protection of public health are met, and that long-overdue capital improvements may receive the benefit of new and considerable state and federal funding, DEP has determined that a capacity-building program with direct operational oversight is necessary to ensure TWW’s near- and long-term success in meeting the needs of the 200,000+ residents served by the system in Trenton, as well as portions of Ewing, Hamilton, Hopewell, and Lawrence.
“Since the outset of my Administration, the provision of clean, affordable drinking water and the promotion of healthy communities have remained among our foremost priorities,” said Governor Murphy. “Protecting our children, families, and businesses is a responsibility that all levels of government share, and one that we must leverage every existing partnership to fulfill. Under the leadership of the DEP and in coordination with the City of Trenton, we will work tirelessly to safeguard our residents and return water system quality to the level our communities deserve.”
“The health of the residents is of paramount importance and we want to see Trenton succeed at all levels of government,” said Lt. Governor Sheila Y. Oliver, who serves as Commissioner of the Department of Community Affairs. “Ensuring public health and safety is a core principle of municipal services. The Division of Local Government Services, which has some fiscal oversight of the City, will assist DEP in any way it can to ensure TWW succeeds in providing safe drinking water for its residents.”
“Clean and safe drinking water is a human right but delivering this public good is a far more complex undertaking than one might expect,” said Commissioner LaTourette. “The depth of managerial, technical, and financial expertise required to ensure consistent operation, maintenance, and improvement of a water system is significant. Yet, not all systems are created equal, and we must invest more time, attention, and resources in those that need our help. Through direct operational oversight, DEP will help Trenton Water Works build the capacity necessary to better serve the public. Through this initiative, DEP and the City will more fully assess the system’s needs, meet its challenges, and ensure its long-term success for the benefit of the people of Trenton and the surrounding communities that this system serves.”
“We are committed to strengthening Trenton Water Works, improving its operations, advancing capital projects, and maintaining high water quality in partnership with the New Jersey Department of Environmental,” said Mayor Gusciora. “As we’ve dealt with City Council obstruction, we are resolute and determined in our efforts to build on the substantial progress we’ve made, fulfilling the promise I made to modernize the TWW system to ensure clean and safe drinking water for our customers and service-area residents for generations to come.”
TWW draws water from the Delaware River to provide water to more than 200,000 people in Trenton, as well as portions of Ewing, Hamilton, Hopewell, and Lawrence. The system has intermittently struggled to fully maintain critical treatment processes, monitor water quality, employ adequately trained operating personnel, and invest in required maintenance and capital needs, including significant upgrades to aging infrastructure such as the seven-acre, open-air finished water reservoir that stores and provides already treated water to about 70 percent of TWW’s distribution system. The initiative launched by the Murphy Administration today with the support of the City is intended to remedy these concerns.
This initiative, which will be implemented in accordance with an administrative order issued by DEP, has two primary phases that will be pursued concurrently: (1) immediate retention and deployment of a capacity-building force comprised of managerial and technical experts who will focus on improving routine operations and maintenance, as well as immediate capital needs; and (2) a full-scale assessment and preparation of organizational and operational recommendations.
To effect Phase 1, TWW will facilitate the direct oversight and monitoring of the system by DEP and its consultants, including a third-party adviser that will be embedded in the system for the purposes of monitoring and assessing all system operations and maintenance, adding necessary technical and managerial capacity to the system, and making technical, managerial, and financial recommendations necessary to bring the system into full compliance with applicable law.
To effect Phase 2, the third-party adviser will undertake a comprehensive technical, managerial, and financial capacity assessment of the system that will result in a report of organizational and operational recommendations, as well as short- and long-term asset management and capital improvement recommendations that will serve the basis of future action and investment.
DEP and the City will collaborate to ensure that the progress and outcomes of this initiative are open and transparent to the public.
As of October 12, 2022, water quality sample results submitted to DEP by TWW reflect that the water system meets applicable water quality standards. DEP will continue to closely monitor water quality parameters and other indicators of the status of the TWW system. If TWW exceeds a regulatory standard for drinking water quality, or if DEP otherwise determines that an acute risk to public health exists, the public notification would be issued to all TWW customers.
“First, I want to thank Governor Murphy and NJDEP Commissioner LaTourette for their decision today to bring Trenton Water Works (TWW) under direct oversight of NJDEP,” said Mayor Martin. “I want to also thank my fellow Mayors, State Legislators, County Officials, and the Hamilton Township Council who have remained steadfast in their focus on ensuring TWW meets their most basic obligations to their customers.” Hamilton Mayor Jeff Martin
“Said in a more simple way – today the State is taking over running TWW,” continued Mayor Martin. “This is a major step towards reaching our simple goal: to ensure all TWW customers have reliably clean and safe drinking water. Further, the Order from NJDEP requires the City Council to approve all items necessary to ensure our goal is reached; guaranteeing a road block to progress is neutralized.” Hamilton Mayor Jeff Martin
“Hopewell Township residents, particularly those in Brandon Farms, depend on Trenton Water Works for safe drinking water. We are grateful to the state Department of Environmental Protection for their quick response to our concerns about the facility,” says Hopewell Township Mayor Peters-Manning. “Thanks go to Hamilton Mayor Jeff Martin for his leadership on this issue. The staff at Trenton Water Works has been nothing but professional in their dealings with the Township, and we look forward to continuing to work with them and the DEP to safeguard the future of our water supply.”
EWING TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–Shots rang out this afternoon at Homan and Hillcrest Avenue in front of Priori’s Delicatessen. Ewing Police did confirm that shots were fired and that no one was hit, but no other details were available at this time.
Earlier this year on June 6, 2022, a 17-year-old allegedly shot and killed beloved 54-year-old deli Oscar Palacios and also severely wounded his 57-year-old brother. At approximately 6:00 am that morning, the victims opened the deli and shortly thereafter the juvenile entered the deli, wearing a dark mask covering his face, and ordered food. The juvenile pointed a handgun at the victims and demanded money. The juvenile fired the gun, grazing the 57-year-old victim’s forehead. A physical struggle ensued between the victim and the juvenile, during which the juvenile shot the victim in the abdomen. The juvenile then fired again, striking Oscar Palacios in the chest. The juvenile then fled the area on a bicycle.
The juvenile was identified through surveillance video from the surrounding area from the time of the shooting. On the surveillance video, he could be seen riding a multi-colored mountain bike and wearing a black jacket and white sneakers with the word “AIR” in large letters on the side.
The juvenile was taken into custody on an unrelated warrant on June 21, 2022. At the time of that arrest, Detectives noticed that he was wearing the same sneakers observed in the surveillance video from June 6. They also observed what appeared to be dried blood on the juvenile’s sneakers. On July 29, 2022, Homicide Task Force Detectives received the results of laboratory analysis conducted by the New Jersey State Police Office of Forensic Sciences that identified the blood on the juvenile’s shoes to be a DNA match to the 57-year-old victim who was shot inside the deli.
The 17-year-old Trenton male is charged with first-degree murder, first-degree attempted murder, first-degree felony murder, first-degree robbery, and firearms offenses. He is being held in the Middlesex County Juvenile Detention Center.
TRENTON, NJ (MERCER) – Trenton Water Works (TWW) Director Mark Lavenberg today responded to a New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) letter and report this week discussing ongoing compliance obligations and TWW’s water quality improvements.
“First and foremost, Trenton Water Works has acted with full transparency in self-reporting ongoing assessments to NJDEP. Many details in the report come directly from our staff. We speak daily and meet weekly with NJDEP,” Director Lavenberg said. “Given that level of coordination, the letter and report issued this week unnecessarily seem like snapshots from the past. Many areas of concern in this report are currently being or have been addressed. Forward strides made by TWW are not reflected in the least in these documents.”
TWW’s ability to correct some of the deficiencies in the letter has been diminished by City Council decisions regarding dozens of major legislative approvals for project funding and awarding of bids. The NJDEP letter points out City Council’s rejection of a $15 million bond request as a destabilizing decision.
This decision adversely effected TWW operations and projects, but discussions with NJDEP regarding alternative options or revised timelines have been ongoing. Many of the items declined by Council this year can be presented to a newly-formed body in 2023.
“We are addressing specific requirements from NJDEP. We have been lead-compliant since 2019 and have made major upgrades, for instance the raw water intake which was a recommendation in the 1976 report quoted by NJDEP,” Lavenberg said. “We are being asked to correct nearly 50-year-old problems in four years, which included a global pandemic. Through all of that, we never once had an interruption in service.”
“We want to set the record straight: our drinking water is safe and, day by day, we are working to make it safer. The health of our customers and residents is our primary concern,” he said.
EWING TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER) – A multi-alarm inferno destroyed the gymnasium and damaged other parts of the Ewing Senior and Community Center early this morning (Friday, Sept. 30).
Ewing Township firefighters were first dispatched to the township facility at 999 Lower Ferry Road at 2:58 a.m. to check an activated fire alarm system. When firefighters arrived on scene a few minutes later, they found the gymnasium, located in the center of the recreational complex, fully-engulfed in flames. A second alarm, which called in mutual aid from neighboring communities, was immediately ordered. As flames shot from windows and burned through the roof and smoke billowed skyward even more help was called in on the third alarm.
Still more firefighters and apparatus were requested to the scene after that, including water tankers from Pennington, Hopewell and Washington Crossing, Pa., as a precaution in the event that enough water could not be obtained from nearby hydrants. As it was, multiple large diameter hose lines were laid along Lower Ferry Road and Parkway Road to supply water from several hydrants. Four aerial master streams were put in service to flow water on the fire from above, while several smaller hoselines were put to work on the ground. Following several partial collapses of walls and sections of the roof, what was left of the gymnasium roof fully collapsed around 5:30 a.m.
Firefighters worked to prevent the flames from extending into the other connected buildings that make up the facility. While there was some damage sustained, those other areas were saved. The blaze was officially declared under control at 7:13 a.m., however firefighters and investigators were expected to remain on the scene throughout the day.
Assisting Ewing Township firefighters on the scene were mutual aid units from Lawrence, Trenton, Hamilton, Pennington, Hopewell Borough, Hopewell Township, Princeton, and Falls, Pa. Other firefighters from Somerset County responded to stand by in Ewing’s firehouses. During that “cover” assignment, those Somerset County firefighters extinguished a dumpster fire on Whitehead Road Extension.
Ewing Police say, nobody lives at the center. Ewing Police were dispatched to a fire alarm at the Ewing senior and community center (999 Lower Ferry Road) at approximately 2:55 a.m. this morning. First responding officers observed an active fire in the gymnasium portion of the building. There was nobody present in the building at the time. The fire went to five alarms to assist with water supply and firefighting operations. As of this time no injuries have been reported. The cause of the fire is still under investigation.
There are road closures on Parkway Avenue from Scotch Road to Farrell Avenue and also lower Ferry Road From Langford Lane road Fireside Avenue.
HAMILTON – TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Hamilton Mayor Martin, State Senator Greenstein, Assemblymen DeAngelo, and Benson, Mercer County Executive Hughes, Mercer County Board of County Commissioners Chair Nina Melker, Ewing Mayor Steinmann, Hopewell Township Mayor Peters-Manning, and Lawrence Township Mayor John Ryan are joining together to call on the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) to take over direct supervision and operation of Trenton Water Works (TWW) after years of failure to comply with safe drinking water obligations.
TWW supplies approximately 29 million gallons of drinking water daily to more than 200,000 people, including residents of Trenton and four neighboring municipalities – Ewing, Hamilton, Hopewell, and Lawrence Townships.
In 2020, the Attorney General and DEP filed a lawsuit against TWW, which the municipalities served by the water utility joined, seeking to compel the City of Trenton and the water utility to take the necessary actions after failing to comply with Administrative Consent Orders to provide safe drinking water. These failures include but are not limited to filling vacancies critical to running the treatment plant and the covering of the Pennington Reservoir, which funding for was denied by the Trenton City Council months after the lawsuit was filed. This week, the NJDEP sent the City and TWW a letter again citing failure to comply with these orders and stating that the DEP is “disturbed by the current City Council’s continuing failures or refusals to authorize resolutions necessary to advance critical capital improvements and ensure that ordinary maintenance and operational needs crucial to the protection of public health are met.”
“The residents of Hamilton have suffered far too long due to the failures of Trenton Water Works and left us with absolutely no confidence in their ability to operate the utility,” said Hamilton Mayor Jeff Martin. “The Trenton City Council’s refusal to authorize public safety projects is putting people’s lives in danger and has prevented TWW’s ability to provide safe and clean drinking water. I call on the Governor and the State of New Jersey to immediately place TWW under direct state control to end the years of gross incompetence.”
“The most recent inspection report from the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection validates the charge that, time and time again, the residents of this region have been failed by the Trenton City Council and Trenton Water Works,” said Senator Linda R. Greenstein. “Despite the actions of some to try and resolve these long-standing issues, it is readily apparent that a change in leadership is desperately needed. I call upon the State of New Jersey and NJDEP to immediately take all steps necessary to establish state control of Trenton Water Works, to ensure the health and safety of our residents remain top priority.”
“We shouldn’t wait for another disaster before taking action, the safety of our residents must come first,” said Assemblyman Dan Benson. “The NJDEP letter shows that the current operation of Trenton Water Works is unacceptable, it’s time for action,” added Benson.
“Trenton City Council has showed us time and again that they are not interested in bringing Trenton Water Works up to the standards set up by the Department of Environmental Protection,” stated Assemblyman Wayne DeAngelo. “At this point, the gross negligence that they have shown has led to an increased risk of waterborne pathogens that threaten the safety of not just Trenton but also the neighboring towns that it serves. I cannot, in good conscience, watch as this continues to escalate. That is why I believe that the control and maintenance of Trenton Water Works should be given to the State so that they can properly bring Trenton Water Works up to the standards of the New Jersey Safe Drinking Water Act.
“Access to safe drinking water and a well-functioning water system is not an unreasonable expectation by the Mercer County residents who have no alternative to the city-operated Trenton Water Works,” said Mercer County Executive Brian Hughes. “While I am encouraged by Mayor Reed Gusciora’s determination to address the ongoing compliance issues and substandard water quality noted by the NJDEP, I condemn the irresponsibility and recklessness of the City Council for its egregious neglect of the water system, its disregard for the directives set forth by the NJDEP and the injustices it has placed on communities of color and on all Trenton Water Works customers.”
“The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection’s latest Compliance Evaluation and Assistance Inspection dated September 27, 2022, of Trenton Water Works, is extremely disturbing and concerning,” stated Mercer County Board of County Commissioners Chair Nina Melker.” It is now evident that an intervention is needed at a state level to ensure that Trenton Water Works can fulfill their obligation to provide safe and clean drinking water to the residents throughout Mercer County in their service designation.”
“The findings in this report confirm why Ewing joined with its neighbors Lawrence and Hamilton to protect its citizens from this failing authority,” said Ewing Township Mayor Bert Steinmann. “ It is time for legislation that will provide a meaningful remedy to the suburban ratepayers being held hostage to the Trenton City Council’s intransigence. On behalf of the citizens of Ewing, we implore DEP to act immediately to compel TWW to correct these deficiencies and ensure the safety of the water provided by TWW to its more than 200,000 consumers.”
“Residents deserve safe drinking water. We are deeply disturbed by DEP’s findings regarding the lack of progress on long-term projects necessary to keep the residents of Hopewell Township and Mercer County safe,” said Hopewell Township Mayor Courtney Peters-Manning. “Hopewell Township has appreciated our working relationship with the professional staff at Trenton Water Works. However, change is necessary,” continued Peters-Manning.
“On behalf of the Trenton Water Works customers within Lawrence Township, it is time for the operations of the water utility to be taken from the City of Trenton,” stated Lawrence Township Mayor John Ryan. “For far too long, the customers of TWW have lived with the fear, and at times reality, that the water they drink and use daily is unsafe. The report from the NJDEP dated September 27, 2022, demonstrates that the City of Trenton cannot meet the needs of its water utility customers by producing clean and safe water. We stand with the other municipalities fighting for their residents’ health and safety. We must do better.”
Mayor Gusciora Responds to State and Local Concerns Regarding TWW
TRENTON, NJ – Mayor Reed Gusciora issued the following statement today regarding progress made at Trenton Water Works (TWW), compliance with State agreements, and attempts by state and local officials to enact a “major shakeup” at the City-owned utility.
“I share the concerns expressed by area officials that we want safe drinking water for our constituents. However, the comments made by those elected officials do not recognize the substantial progress made at Trenton Water Works over the last four years. I wholeheartedly agree that if the Trenton City Council had done their job, we would not find ourselves in this position. They voted down critical projects including decommissioning the reservoir, replacing water mains, lead remediation, heavy equipment, facility upgrades, chemical purchases, and debt service. Council leaders even engaged a court battle to stop executive action in support of various water quality improvements at TWW.
In addition, one of the main items I ran on was improving Trenton Water Works. In 2019, we developed a $405-million, six-year capital plan to undertake critical projects within its central pumping station, water-filtration plant, and distribution system. These projects are designed to maintain high water quality and make the 163-year-old public water system more resilient.
Despite the efforts of City Council to undermine TWW as a utility of the City of Trenton, I welcome working in tandem with the State DEP to resolve any outstanding issues and ensure safe drinking water for our consumers for years to come. In that vein, I will announce shortly our proposed plan to address the issues raised by the DEP and to give comfort to our ratepayers and residents by showing demonstrative improvements in our water delivery system.”
Purchased by the City of Trenton in 1859, Trenton Water Works is one of the oldest and largest publicly owned water systems in the United States. TWW supplies approximately 28 million gallons of water per day to a quarter-million consumers in a five-municipality service area comprised of Trenton, Ewing Township, parts of Hamilton Township, Lawrence Township, and Hopewell Township.
TWW operates a 60-million-gallon water-filtration plant and water-distribution system that consists of a 100-million-gallon reservoir, 683 miles of water mains, three pump stations, nearly 8,000 valves, 3,517 fire hydrants, and six interconnections between TWW and other water suppliers. TWW serves approximately 63,000 metered customers.
Winnifred Olosunde, 66, and Taiwo “Peter” Olosunde, 55, both of Ewing, NJ, were each chargedwith one count of third-degree insurance fraud, nine counts of third-degree failure to file personal and employer tax returns, and nine counts of third-degree failure to pay personal and employer taxes, in connection with their business Two Enterprise, Inc. (Two Enterprise),which was also named as a defendant.
September 27, 2022
TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)– Acting Attorney General Matthew J. Platkin and the Office of the Insurance Fraud Prosecutor (OIFP) announced that a Mercer County couple, and owners of a New Jersey non-emergency medical transportation company, have been charged with an alleged scheme to provide false payroll information in order to obtain lower premiums on workers’ compensation coverage.
Winnifred Olosunde, 66, and Taiwo “Peter” Olosunde, 55, both of Ewing, NJ, were each chargedwith one count of third-degree insurance fraud, nine counts of third-degree failure to file personal and employer tax returns, and nine counts of third-degree failure to pay personal and employer taxes, in connection with their business Two Enterprise, Inc. (Two Enterprise),which was also named as a defendant.The charges were contained in an indictment handed up by a state grand jury on September 16, 2022.
Winnifred Olosunde is charged with insurance fraud for allegedly knowingly providing false information in connection with applications to renew insurance policies with New Jersey Manufacturer’s Insurance Group (NJM) and Amguard Insurance Company between 2019 and 2021. The indictment alleges that the payroll documents submitted to the insurance providers contained material misrepresentations regarding the number of Two Enterprise medical transportation drivers, and the duties and payroll of several of the drivers. Taiwo Olosunde is charged with insurance fraud in connection with records that were submitted in 2019.
The couple is also charged with failing to file New Jersey personal income tax returns for the years 2016 through 2020 and failing to pay $27,597 in personal income taxes for those years. In addition, together with their company, the couple is also charged with failing to file New Jersey employer payroll tax returns for the years 2017 through 2020, and failing to remit $5,889 in employer payroll taxes to the New Jersey Division of Taxation for those years.
The charges are merely accusations and the defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty.
Third-degree crimes carry a sentence of three to five years in state prison and a fine of up to $15,000.00.
Deputy Attorney General Melvina D. Fennell presented the case to the State Grand Jury for the Office of the Insurance Fraud Prosecutor. Detective Brian Bunn coordinated the investigation with Investigator Anthony Mihalow.
Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Tracy M. Thompson thanked the Department of Treasury for its assistance with the investigation.
Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Thompson noted that some important cases have started with anonymous tips. People who are concerned about insurance cheating and have information about a fraud can report it anonymously by calling the toll-free hotline at 1-877-55-FRAUD, or visiting the Web site at www.NJInsurancefraud.org. State regulations permit a reward to be paid to an eligible person who provides information that leads to an arrest, prosecution and conviction for insurance fraud.
To report suspected tax fraud, please call the NJ Treasury, Division of Taxation 24-Hour Recorded Tip Line at 609-322-6057.
EWING TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)—Ewing Township Police reported that at 6:07 this morning that Police were detailed to the area or 432 Stokes Avenue for a report of a male struck by gunfire. Upon arrival, it was determined that the victim suffered a single gunshot wound to his leg. Ewing EMS transported the victim to Capital Health Regional Medical Center for treatment. Police reported the man is reported to be in stable condition. Police say that there is no reason to believe that there is any active threat to the community.
The in incident is currently under investigation by Ewing Township Police Department Detective Justin Quinlan. If anyone has any information that may assist with the investigation, please contact Detective Quinlan at 609-882-1313 x7512 or by email at email@example.com
Anyone with information may also feel free to contact the Ewing Police Tipline at 609-882-7530 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org The tipline should not be used to report crimes in progress or emergencies that require immediate response.
EWING TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–Ewing and Trenton firefighters were dispatched to 75 Main Boulevard for a reported structure fire at 4:37 a.m. Upon arrival firefighters were met with heavy fire on the second floor of a two-story home. Firefighters advanced hose lines and were met with reported “Collyer’s Mansion” type conditions and were able to battle back the flames. The bulk of the flames were quickly knocked down, but firefighters remained on scene most of the morning, investigating, hitting hotspots, and performing overhaul of the structure.
Ewing Police stated that police and firefighters are still on scene this morning. The fire department is still on scene putting out “hot spots”. The road remains closed to assist with fire operations.
EWING TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–Ewing Township Police report that over the last several weeks, our area has experienced a large increase in the theft of catalytic converters from vehicles. On Sunday, September 11, 2022 at approximately 3:55 a.m., Officer David Massi was on routine patrol on Troy Avenue when he observed a male crouching behind a vehicle that was parked on the street. When Officer Massi attempted to conduct an investigatory stop, the male fled on foot. Officer Massi gave chase and relayed his location to responding officers who were able to set up a perimeter. The male (identified as Anthony Riggins, 49-year-old male from Trenton, NJ) was subsequently located by Officer Massi hiding in tall grass on the lot of 320 Robbins Avenue. After a brief struggle, Riggins was taken into custody. After taking Riggins into custody, a search found him to be in possession of drug paraphernalia as well as a pill bottle containing suspected crack cocaine. Officer Massi then returned to the area where he first encountered Riggins. At that location, officers located a discarded Sawzall cutting tool on the ground by the vehicle where Riggins was initially observed. Officers also located a black backpack which contained an NJ identification card belonging to Riggins, 14 used Sawzall blades, a screwdriver and a Gerber multi-tool.
Riggins was charged with the following offenses: Resisting Arrest by Flight, Resisting Arrest, Obstructing Administration of Law, Possession of a Controlled Dangerous Substance, Possession of Burglar’s Tools, and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia.
EWING TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–The Mercer County Homicide Task Force and the Ewing Police Department are investigating an overnight shooting death in Ewing Township, Mercer County Prosecutor Angelo J. Onofri reported.
Just after 1:00 a.m. on August 24, 2022, Ewing police were dispatched to an apartment on Mid Way Lane on a report of shots fired. Responding officers searched the area and located the victim, identified as Christopher MacLeod, 30, unresponsive on a grassy patch near his apartment building. He had been shot multiple times. MacLeod was transported to Capital Health Regional Medical Center where he was pronounced dead a few hours later.
Preliminary investigation revealed that MacLeod was home when there was a knock at his door. He responded and shots were heard moments later. Detectives located shell casings in the common walkway area between buildings.
No arrests have been made and the investigation is ongoing. Detectives do not believe this was a random shooting and evidence suggests MacLeod was the intended target. Anyone with information is asked to contact the Mercer County Homicide Task Force at (609) 989-6406. Information can also be emailed to email@example.com.
On April 22, 2022, according to the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office, Christopher MacLeod, 30, of Ewing, was charged with Possession of more than 25 Pounds of Marijuana with Intent to Distribute in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5b(10)(a); Possession of more than Five Pounds of Hashish with Intent to Distribute in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5b(10)(a); Conspiracy to Possess more than 25 Pounds of Marijuana with Intent to Distribute in violations of N.J.S.A. 2C:5-2a(1) and N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5b(10)(a); Possession of Percocet with Intent to Distribute in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5b(5); Possession of Percocet in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10a(1); Possession of Marijuana in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10a(3)(b); Possession of Drug Paraphernalia in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:36-2a; Certain Person Not to Possess a Weapon in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:39-7b; Possession of a Firearm during a Controlled Dangerous Substance Offense in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:39-4.1a; and Financial Facilitation in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:21-25c. MacLeod is lodged in the Ocean County Jail pending a detention hearing.
Christopher MacLeod, 30, of Ewing, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Photo.
Early morning Breaking News story here:
PRESS RELEASE-FOUR MERCER COUNTY RESIDENTS AND ONE OCEAN COUNTY RESIDENT CHARGED WITH NARCOTICS AND WEAPONS OFFENSES
Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley D. Billhimer announced that Detectives from the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Narcotics Strike Force collaborated with Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Asset Forfeiture Unit, United States Drug Enforcement Administration – High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas (HIDTA) Group 5, United States Department of Homeland Security – Homeland Security Investigations, United States Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, United States Federal Bureau of Investigation – Red Bank Field Office, Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office Narcotics Task Force, Mercer County Sheriff’s Office Tactical Response Team, Lakehurst Borough Police Department Patrol Division, Lakehurst Borough Police Department Detective Bureau, Ewing Township Police Department Detective Bureau, Ewing Township Police Department Patrol Division, Lakewood Township Police Department Street Crimes Unit, Lakewood Township Police Department K-9 Unit, Manchester Township Police Department Narcotics Enforcement Team, Elizabeth Police Department Narcotics Bureau, and Elizabeth Police Department Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) Division, to conduct an investigation into the distribution of cocaine, marijuana, and pain medication laced with fentanyl in the Ocean and Mercer County areas. This cooperative, multi-agency investigation identified three residences in Ewing, one residence in Lakehurst, and a motor vehicle located in Lakewood, as being utilized by Ronald Walker, 37, of Ewing, and Christopher MacLeod, 30, also of Ewing, to store and distribute cocaine, marijuana, and pain pills laced with fentanyl.
On April 14, 2022, Detectives from the aforementioned law enforcement agencies executed court-authorized search warrants on the three subject Ewing residences, as well as the subject Lakehurst residence and vehicle located in Lakewood. As a result, Detectives seized approximately three-and-one-half ounces of cocaine, one ounce of Percocet pills laced with fentanyl, one gallon of Promethazine, 600 pounds of Marijuana, a loaded Performance Center M&P .380 Handgun, a loaded Keltec 9mm rifle with high capacity magazine, and approximately $158,000 in United States Currency. Arrested were:
Ronald Walker, 37, of Ewing, charged with Conspiracy to Possess more than 25 Pounds of Marijuana with Intent to Distribute in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:5-2a(1) and N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5b(10)(a); Possession of more than One Ounce but less than Five Pounds of Marijuana with Intent to Distribute in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5b(11)b; Possession of more than One-Half Ounce but less than Five Ounces of Cocaine with Intent to Distribute in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5b(2); Possession of Cocaine in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10a(1); Possession of Methamphetamine in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10a(1); Possession of Marijuana in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10a(3)(b); Possession of Drug Paraphernalia in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:36-2a; and Certain Person Not to Possess a Weapon in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:39-7b. Walker is lodged in the Ocean County Jail pending a detention hearing.
Christopher MacLeod, 30, of Ewing, charged with Possession of more than 25 Pounds of Marijuana with Intent to Distribute in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5b(10)(a); Possession of more than Five Pounds of Hashish with Intent to Distribute in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5b(10)(a); Conspiracy to Possess more than 25 Pounds of Marijuana with Intent to Distribute in violations of N.J.S.A. 2C:5-2a(1) and N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5b(10)(a); Possession of Percocet with Intent to Distribute in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5b(5); Possession of Percocet in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10a(1); Possession of Marijuana in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10a(3)(b); Possession of Drug Paraphernalia in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:36-2a; Certain Person Not to Possess a Weapon in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:39-7b; Possession of a Firearm during a Controlled Dangerous Substance Offense in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:39-4.1a; and Financial Facilitation in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:21-25c. MacLeod is lodged in the Ocean County Jail pending a detention hearing.
Meghan Norton, 33, of Ewing, charged with Possession of More than 25 Pounds of Marijuana with Intent to Distribute in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5b(10)(a); Possession of more than Five Pounds of Hashish with Intent to Distribute in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5b(10)(a); Conspiracy to Possess more than 25 Pounds of Marijuana with Intent to Distribute in violations of N.J.S.A. 2C:5-2a(1) and N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5b(10)(a); Possession of Percocet with Intent to Distribute in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5b(5); Possession of Percocet in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10a(1); Possession of Marijuana in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10a(3)(b); Possession of Drug Paraphernalia in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:36-2a; Possession of a Firearm during a Controlled Dangerous Substance Offense in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:39-4.1a; and Financial Facilitation in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:21-25c. Norton was transported to the Ocean County Jail; she was subsequently released by the Court as a consequence of New Jersey Bail Reform.
Autumn Hearns, 40, of Ewing, charged with Conspiracy to Possess more than 25 Pounds of Marijuana with Intent to Distribute in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:5-2a(1) and N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5b(10)(a); Possession of more than One Ounce but less than Five Pounds of Marijuana with Intent to Distribute in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5b(11)b; Possession of Methamphetamine in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10a(1); Possession of Marijuana in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10a(3)(b); and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:36-2a. Hearns was charged on a summons and released pending a future court appearance.
Dana Altieri, 52, of Lakehurst, charged with Conspiracy to Possess more than 25 Pounds of Marijuana with Intent to Distribute in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:5-2a(1) and N.J.S.A. 2C:35-5b(10)(a); Possession of Drug Paraphernalia in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:36-2a; Possession of a Firearm during a Controlled Dangerous Substance Offense in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:39-4.1a; Possession of a Large Capacity Firearms Magazine in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:39-3j; and Financial Facilitation in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:21-25c. Altieri was charged on a summons and released pending a future court appearance.
Prosecutor Billhimer commends the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Narcotics Strike Force, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Asset Forfeiture Unit, United States Drug Enforcement Administration – HIDTA Group 5, United States Department of Homeland Security – Homeland Security Investigations, United States Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, United States Federal Bureau of Investigation – Red Bank Field Office, Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office Narcotics Task Force, Mercer County Sheriff’s Office Tactical Response Team, Lakehurst Borough Police Department Patrol Division, Lakehurst Borough Police Department Detective Bureau, Ewing Township Police Department Detective Bureau, Ewing Township Police Department Patrol Division, Lakewood Township Police Department Street Crimes Unit, Lakewood Township Police Department K-9 Unit, Manchester Township Police Department Narcotics Enforcement Team, Elizabeth Police Department Narcotics Bureau, and Elizabeth Township Police Department CCTV Division, for their combined and collective efforts in connection with this investigation.
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.
EWING TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–MidJersey.news and OnScene news is at a shooting investigation in Ewing Town Center. From what we know the shooting happened around 1:00 a.m. in the Town Center Development on Midway Lane near Fisher Guide Drive.
Ewing Police, Ewing Township Fire Departments, Ewing EMS were on scene. EMS rushed the victim to the Trauma Center at Captial Health Regional Medical Center for treatment. The condition of the victim is unknown at this time.
This morning Ewing Police are on scene in Town Center.
This is a Breaking News Story please check back for further details as they become available.
EWING TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–The Mercer County Prosecutor’s Special Victims Unit and the Mercer County Homicide Task Force are investigating the death of Dominic Bowman Jr. The Special Victims Unit was contacted by Ewing police on Monday, August 8, 2022, in regard to an unresponsive 4-month-old infant who was at a day care being run out of a private home on Theresa Street in Ewing. The infant was taken to Capital Health Medical Center in Hopewell, then transported to Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia where he died as a result of his injuries a few days later. Dominic’s injuries included skull fractures and brain bleeding.
At this time, no charges have been filed and the investigation is ongoing. The matter was also reported to the state Division of Child Protection and Permanency as well as the state Institutional Abuse Investigation Unit.
Our hearts are heavy, and we are deeply saddened as our precious Dominic Bowman Jr, affectionately known as DJ, took his place in heaven today, 8/11/2022. DJ was just shy of turning 4 months old and the only child of Diamond Thompson and Dominic Bowman Sr.
DJ was being watched by someone who was trusted with his care when hours later, he was taken to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia unresponsive. Once at the hospital, it was learned that DJ suffered severe brain injuries. DJ was hospitalized for 3 days, and he ultimately succumbed to those injuries. Our family has hired an attorney to investigate exactly what happened to DJ, and we will not stop until we get all the answers.
This is a difficult time, as the family is mourning DJ’s untimely passing. We ask those of you with compassion and love in your heart to help DJ’s parents, Diamond Thompson and Dominic Bowman Sr., with the funeral and attorney expenses. We would like to raise $8000 for his final farewell. However, no amount is too small, and we are grateful for any donation.
Payments and donations will go to Family Funeral Home for DJ’s burial/arrangements. Any money remaining will be used to establish DJ’s Law and/or legal fees.
TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Thirteen individuals were charged today with various drug trafficking and firearms offenses arising from an investigation targeting unlawful activities in a northeast neighborhood in the city of Trenton, U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger announced.
Jamal Wilson, aka “Vill,” and Theodore Meekins, aka “Meech,” both of Trenton, were among 12 defendants charged in a 16-count criminal complaint unsealed today. Ten of the defendants were arrested this morning as part of a takedown coordinated by federal and local law enforcement authorities. One defendant is currently detained on related charges. One defendant remains at large. A 13th defendant, Alterrick Livingston, 42, of Trenton, was arrested and charged today in a separate one-count complaint following law enforcement’s court-authorized search of his Trenton apartment and the recovery of five privately made firearms (PMFs), two fully drilled frames, and hundreds of rounds of ammunition, and numerous tools and accessories used for manufacturing and assembling firearms.
Wilson was charged with three counts of distribution and possession with intent to distribute controlled substances, including 100 grams or more of heroin, 28 grams or more of cocaine base, and additional quantities of cocaine. Meekins was charged in three counts with distribution and possession with intent to distribute controlled substances, as well as possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. Livingston was charged with possession of ammunition by a convicted felon. The remaining defendants were charged with varying counts of distribution or possession with intent to distribute controlled substances, including heroin, cocaine base, and cocaine. Those arrested today are scheduled to make their initial court appearances this afternoon before U.S. Magistrate Judge Tonianne J. Bongiovanni in Trenton federal court.
According to the two federal criminal complaints:
Beginning in July 2020, law enforcement agencies investigating drug trafficking in the area of Garfield, Cleveland, and Logan avenues in Trenton executed numerous controlled purchases of narcotics from multiple defendants, including Wilson and Meekins. On multiple occasions, law enforcement officers made multiple seizures of unlawfully trafficked narcotics, including, suspected heroin, cocaine base and a firearm from a vehicle driven by Meekins, a previously convicted felon. Communications that law enforcement intercepted revealed that Wilson was a significant drug trafficker of heroin, cocaine base, and cocaine in the area, specifically in the area of the Grand Court Villas apartment building, East State Street and South Olden Avenue; Garfield Avenue Playground; and other locations. In connection with today’s coordinated operation, law enforcement conducted a court-authorized search of Livingston’s Trenton apartment, and recovered multiple firearms, hundreds of rounds of ammunition, and numerous tools and accessories used for manufacturing and assembling firearms.
The charges of distribution and possession with intent to distribute 100 grams of heroin and/or 28 grams of cocaine base carry a statutory mandatory minimum term of imprisonment of five years, a maximum potential penalty of 40 years in prison, and a maximum fine of $5 million. The remaining narcotics charges carry a maximum potential penalty of 20 years in prison, and a maximum fine of $1 million. The firearm and ammunition counts with which Meekins and Livingston are charged each carry a maximum potential penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
The charges filed today are the result of an investigation by the Greater Trenton Safe Streets Task Force. Led by the FBI, the Task Force is comprised of various federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies, and its mission is to combine the resources and intelligence of the participating agencies to enhance the identification, apprehension, and prosecution of individuals involved in gang-related activities, violent crime, and drug distribution in and around the greater Trenton area.
U.S. Attorney Sellinger credited special agents of the FBI, Newark Division, Trenton Resident Agency, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge James E. Dennehy; special agents of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, Newark Division, Trenton Satellite Office, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Jeffrey L. Matthews; officers of the Trenton Police Department, under the direction of Director Steve Wilson; officers of the Burlington City Police Department, under the direction of Chief of Police John Fine; officers of the Burlington Township Police Department, under the direction of Public Safety Director Bruce Painter; officers of the Willingboro Township Police Department, under the direction of Acting Public Safety Director Ian Bucs; and detectives with the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office, under the direction of Prosecutor Angelo J. Onofri with the investigation leading to today’s charges.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Ashley Super Pitts and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher Matthews of the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s Criminal Division in Trenton.
The charges and allegations contained in the complaints are merely accusations and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.