Category: Princeton

National Police Week: 2021 Police Unity Tour Chapter 10

March 13, 2021

By: Tyler Eckel

Riders of the 2021 Police Unity Tour Chapter 10 biked hundreds of miles over a period of three days, despite not being able to ride into Washington, DC.

Organized in May 1997, The primary purpose of the Police Unity Tour “We Ride For Those Who Died” is to raise awareness of Law Enforcement Officers who have died in the line of duty. They also raise funds for the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, DC.

This years ride began on May 9. Bikers began their first day by riding from Eatontown, NJ to Atlantic City, NJ, totaling 97 miles. During this ride, they made stops at the Ocean County Police Academy for a memorial ceremony, and did a ride-by at the Trooper Castellano Memorial on Route 195 in Howell, before ending their first day in Atlantic City.

The next day, riders began in Atlantic City, and ended their day in Lewes, DE, including the ferry from Cape May, NJ to Lewes. On this day, bikers rode a total of 72 miles.

On day three, the last day of the tour, riders continued from Lewes, DE to Annapolis, MD, totaling 90 miles.

All together, bikers rode nearly 260 miles to honor law enforcement officers who have died in the line of duty.

The Police Unity Tour usually consists of four days, however this year the fourth day was stolen from them by officials of Washington, DC. Unfortunately, officials would not grant the organization permits for the ride, nor ceremony at the memorial, claiming covid concerns and that it could “incite unrest.”

Despite politics stealing their ride through DC, riders did a great job this year to raise support for the ones who made the ultimate sacrifice when they left their families to protect ours.

Mercer County agencies that participated in the ride are Princeton Township Police, East Windsor Township Police, Robbinsville Township Police, Trenton Police, Ewing Township Police, and New Jersey State Police.





Boys Lacrosse: Allentown 12 Princeton 11

April 26, 2021

ALLENTOWN, NJ (MONMOUTH)–The Allentown boys Lacrosse Team won their game in the final moments over Princeton with a final score of 12-11.

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“The Time Traveler’s Lens” An Extended Reality Immersive Performance Available At Princeton Battlefield State Park

April 23, 2021

PRINCETON, NJ (MERCER)–If you’re a Central Jersey local, the ionic colonnade at Princeton Battlefield State Park is a monument you’ve likely visited or driven past on numerous occasions—but what is it, really?

Choreographer, filmmaker, and Lawrenceville NJ resident Merli V. Guerra presents a groundbreaking new production that answers this question through a creative blending of history, dance, and technology. Now open to the public, “The Time Traveler’s Lens” is an extended reality (XR) immersive performance illuminating the history of this mysterious local landmark.

“As an artist and history-lover, I am constantly finding myself tapping into the hidden layers of a space’s identity, past and present,” says Guerra. “When visiting ruins, I have an urge to physically touch the remnants of stone walls and pillars that hold memories of times past.”

Guerra is a professional dancer and award-winning interdisciplinary artist with a background in ballet, modern, and classical Odissi Indian dance. She is Co-Founder and Artistic Director of Luminarium Dance Company—an award-winning contemporary company in Boston, MA—and has performed lead roles with acclaimed companies on tours to India (2007, 2012) and Japan (2009). Guerra is a freelance choreographer, filmmaker, writer, and designer whose works have been presented by 80+ events across the U.S., as well as Argentina, Canada, Germany, Indonesia, Italy, Portugal, and Spain. She is currently a Part-Time Lecturer and MFA in Dance candidate at Rutgers University, set to graduate this May.

In March of last year, Guerra began working on her thesis, choosing to highlight the history of the colonnade: “When I began researching the layers of history associated with the colonnade, I questioned how its marble columns might play back these experiential recordings; how the experiences of these stones might translate into human behavior; and how choreographic and virtual tools might be used to immerse viewers in each layer of this site’s identity.”

The culminating production, presented with support from both Rutgers University and Luminarium, publicly launched on Monday and provides viewers with an exciting interactive experience both on and off the park grounds. This site-specific performance features five 360-degree dance films that are viewable as augmented reality (AR) across the battlefield grounds on visitors’ personal mobile devices or as a virtual reality (VR) experience when viewed remotely elsewhere. This immersive, yet Covid-safe, performance invites visitors to become active participants in the colonnade’s history. Shot in 360, no two viewings of this work will ever be alike.

“My mother’s property is within walking distance from the monument. I remember many visits there when I was a child,” says Wendy Lawson, who viewed the work remotely from Massachusetts. “Merli’s work has brought this monument alive again! What fascinating research she uncovered. I got lost in time while watching all the videos!”

“The Time Traveler’s Lens” is accessible via a website (http://luminariumdance.org/time) that can be unlocked for free using passwords found at the Princeton Battlefield State Park or by paying a one-time ticket purchase for infinite remote access. Visitors are encouraged to view these XR films using the free YouTube app on their mobile devices for an immersive 360-degree experience. Visit http://luminariumdance.org/time to learn more.



Governor Murphy Signs Legislation Providing $15 Million in Aid to Small Businesses and Non-Profits

Legislation is Part of a $100 Million Relief Package for New Jersey Small Businesses

April 12, 2021

PRINCETON, NJ (MERCER)–Governor Phil Murphy today signed into law A-A5446, which provides $15 million in federal COVID-19 relief aid for small businesses throughout New Jersey. The bill – sponsored by Senators Linda Greenstein and Joseph Lagana and Assembly Members Joann Downey, Andrew Zwicker, and Sterley Stanley – provides aid in the form of grants to small businesses and non-profits in need. The bill is part of a five-bill, $100 million relief effort aimed at helping New Jersey’s small businesses recover from the year-long pandemic.

“New Jersey’s small businesses were particularly hard hit by the ravages of COVID-19, ” said Governor Murphy. “This legislation, along with three additional bills I signed last week and one I will sign in the near future, will go a long way toward helping hundreds of state businesses keep their doors open as we recover from this year-long ordeal.”

“Since the beginning of the pandemic, supporting small businesses has been central to Governor Murphy’s response. These businesses are the lifeblood of our economy, and ensuring they not only recover but come back stronger and better prepared for future challenges is critical to achieving a sustainable, equitable recovery,” said NJEDA Chief Executive Officer Tim Sullivan. “The funding announced today, in addition to the other funds for specific industries announced over the past week, will provide much-needed support for businesses as they overcome the remaining pandemic-related challenges and set the stage for a stronger, fairer recovery.”

“Providing our support during this difficult time will not only allow these organizations to remain in operation, but will help preserve and create jobs while spurring the economic recovery we aim to achieve,” said Assembly Members Downey, Zwicker and Stanley. “Investing in our businesses and non-profits will have a direct, beneficial impact on families throughout our state for years to come.”

“Throughout the last year, COVID-19 has placed a serious strain on many of our local businesses and nonprofit organizations. Unfortunately, a number of beloved businesses in our communities were unable to weather this storm and sadly closed their doors for good,” said Senator Greenstein. “This $15 million in federal funding will provide a big sigh of relief to so many business owners and nonprofits throughout our state, as well as their employees and individuals that rely on their services.”

“Providing financial support to businesses and nonprofits is fundamental to their survival during the pandemic,” said Senator Lagana.  “Local businesses create vibrant downtowns and communities, while nonprofits can efficiently and effectively provide services for people in need. Together, they will play a central role in New Jersey’s economic recovery and the quality of life for our residents.”

The relief aid will be administered by the New Jersey Economic Development Authority, which will announce when the application for the aid is open. To date, the NJEDA has distributed more than $250 million in aid to some 55,000 businesses across the state.

The signing was held at Jammin’ Crepes, a business that began its journey at a farmers market in the local train station parking lot and in 2014 opened its first brick and mortar location in downtown Princeton.



Former Princeton Resident Charged In Connection With Multimillion-Dollar Schemes Involving Securities Fraud, Credit Card Fraud, and Business E-Mail Compromise Fraud

March 30, 2021

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–A former Princeton resident was arrested today and charged with engaging in multiple fraudulent schemes intended to steal millions of dollars from individual and institutional victims, Acting U.S. Attorney Rachael A. Honig announced.

Ford Graham, 57, formerly of Princeton, New Jersey, was arrested today in Nellysford, Virginia, and charged by criminal complaint with two counts of wire fraud, one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, one count of securities fraud, three counts of aggravated identity theft, and one count of engaging in unlawful money transactions. Graham made his initial appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge Joel Hoppe in Harrisonburg, Virginia, federal court. Graham will make his initial appearance in U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey on a date to be determined.

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

From December 2012 to September 2013, Graham represented himself as the owner, chief executive, chairman, manager, and principal member of dozens of corporate entities purporting to do business under an umbrella organization, Vulcan Capital Corp. (Vulcan). Graham held himself out as a highly successful financier who had vast experience sponsoring complex energy and natural resource projects and other investment deals. In connection with one such investment that Graham and a Vulcan entity sponsored, one victim (Victim-1) invested more than $2 million with Graham, relying on Graham’s misrepresentations and omissions regarding the investment. The investigation revealed that Graham misappropriated substantial amounts of Victim-1’s investment money and used it for his own personal benefit and enrichment – including international vacations, private school tuition for his children, and other personal amenities – instead of the investment purpose that Graham had marketed. Graham caused multiple victims to lose more than $2.6 million.

Graham also participated in a scheme to defraud merchant processing institutions through fraudulent credit card transactions. From December 2017 to February 2018, Graham used at least one payment processing platform to process fraudulent charges on stolen credit card numbers that he obtained. After the payment processing platform credited Graham’s account with the payments requested, Graham quickly transferred or caused to be transferred the fraudulently obtained money to other accounts before the victim institutions could act. When requested by the victim payment processing company to provide supporting documentation, Graham submitted false documentation, including fabricated invoices and credit card authorization forms, fabricated e-mails, forged signatures, altered bank statements, and other false and fraudulent information. This scheme resulted in tens of thousands of dollars of losses and the misappropriation of multiple victims’ personal identification information.

From February 2017 to June 2018, Graham conspired with others to defraud victim institutions and individuals of millions of dollars through a business email compromise scheme. Members of the conspiracy sent fraudulent e-mail communications to victims who were scheduled to make substantial outgoing wire transfers to third parties. These fraudulent e-mails created the appearance that they had been sent by the intended third-party recipients of the scheduled payments when, in fact, they were sent by members of the conspiracy. The fraudulent emails requested the victims to reroute the scheduled payments to different bank accounts, which Graham and his conspirators controlled. In one instance, a fraudulent email successfully induced one victim unknowingly to reroute a payment of more than $650,000 to a bank account that Graham controlled. Upon receiving the funds, Graham transferred or caused to be transferred substantial portions of those funds to other accounts that he controlled, and which he used and intended to use for his own personal benefit. Graham and his conspirators attempted to defraud multiple victims of at least $6 million.

The wire fraud and wire fraud conspiracy counts each carry a maximum potential penalty of 20 years in prison and a fine of $250,000, or twice the gross amount of gain or loss from the offense, whichever is greater. The securities fraud count is punishable by a maximum potential penalty of 20 years in prison and a $5 million fine. Each count of aggravated identity theft is punishable by a statutory mandatory consecutive sentence of two years, which must run consecutive to any other sentence. The charge of engaging in unlawful monetary transactions carries a maximum potential penalty of 10 years in prison and a fine of $250,000 or twice the gross gain or loss from the offense or not more than twice the amount of the criminally derived property involved in the transactions.

Acting U.S. Attorney Honig credited special agents of the FBI, Newark Division, Red Bank Resident Agency, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge George M. Crouch Jr.; special agents of IRS – Criminal Investigation, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Michael Montanez; and inspectors of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, under the direction of Acting Inspector in Charge Rodney M. Hopkins, with the investigation leading to today’s charges. Acting U.S. Attorney Honig also thanked investigators with the New Jersey Bureau of Securities, under the direction of Chief Christopher W. Gerold, for their assistance in connection with the investigation.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorneys J. Brendan Day, Attorney-in-Charge of the Trenton Branch Office, and Martha K. Nye, of the Criminal Division in Trenton.

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Princeton man facing multiple charges following disturbance at a Lawrence CVS

February 10, 2021

By: Tyler Eckel

LAWRENCE TOWNSHIP (MERCER): On February 9th 2021, the Lawrence Police Department responded to the area of the CVS store located at 2971 Brunswick Pike, Lawrenceville, NJ on a report of a male acting erratically and harassing customers.

Responding Lawrence Police officers located the male, later identified as Byung Yu, a 50 year old male from Princeton, NJ operating a 2017 Honda Accord. Lawrence Police officers attempted to conduct a motor vehicle stop on the 2017 Honda Accord, however the operator, Yu failed to comply with officer’s commands and continued to elude officers in an unsafe manner on Brunswick Pike in Lawrenceville, NJ.

Yu was later apprehended by Lawrence Police officers a short distance away on a residential street. During the apprehension a Lawrence officer sustained an injury.

Yu was charged with Complaint Warrant 2021-0088-1107 with the below listed offenses:

1 count of Eluding: 2C:29-2B (2nd degree)
1 count of Aggravated Assault: 2C 12-b1 (3rd degree)
1 count of Resisting Arrest: 2C:29-2A(1) (4th degree)
1 count of Obstructing the Administration of Law: 2C:29-1 (Disorderly Person)

A subsequent investigation conducted by Lawrence Police identified Byung Yu as the suspect responsible for committing the offense of Criminal Mischief from an incident that occurred earlier in the day in the a 2600 block of Lawrence Rd, Lawrenceville, NJ.

In that incident, Yu was captured on surveillance video vandalizing a residents lawn sign. Yu was charged with 1 count of Criminal Mischief and issued Complaint Summons 2021-000089-1107.

Please contact LT Joseph Lech of the Lawrence Police Department if you have any additional questions.
609-844-7128
jlech@lawrencetwp.com



Mercer County Sheriff Warns Of Phone Scam

January 22, 2021

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Once again, Mercer County Sheriff Jack Kemler has issued a warning to area residents regarding telephone scammers posing as Mercer County Sheriff’s Officers. Over the past month, the Mercer County Sheriff’s Office has received numerous complaints about suspected phone scams asking residents for personal bank account information or cash payments. Some calls have reached residents throughout New Jersey and Pennsylvania. The scammers identify themselves as Mercer County Sheriff’s Officers along with fictitious badge numbers. The callers state they have an arrest warrant related to money laundering charges and need access to their bank accounts. The scammers also suggest meeting at a location and to bring cash for bail or fines. Otherwise, they will be taken into custody. “I can state with confidence the Mercer County Sheriff’s Office will never call anyone and ask for their bank account number or to meet in an odd location to pay bail or fines with cash,” said Sheriff Kemler.Unfortunately, it is difficult to crack down on telephone scammers because calls are often generated from phone banks located out of state. While the calls remain under investigation, the best advice is to exercise common sense. If a resident suspects a particular telephone call may be a scam, do not give out any personal information and simply hang up. Anyone who receives such a call and is uncertain of its validity should report the call to the Mercer County Sheriff’s Office at 609-989-6111.

COVID-19 Vaccination Sites Planned At CURE Arena And MCCC

January 16, 2021

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Mercer County plans on opening an COVID-19 vaccination site at CURE Insurance Arena in Trenton in partnership with Capital Health System. An additional vaccination site is planned at Mercer County Community College and will be managed by the County Health Officer’s Association. See full press rease below from Mercer County Executive Brian M. Hughes:

Dear Mercer County Community,

The State of New Jersey this week ramped up its COVID-19 vaccination efforts, and Mercer County is preparing to do the same. The County will open a vaccination site at CURE Insurance Arena in Trenton in partnership with Capital Health System, which will manage the site. The opening date is dependent on vaccine supply but a soft opening is planned next week.

We had a successful partnership with Capital Health during the COVID-19 testing program we established last spring, and I can’t think of a more fitting partner for this next phase of the pandemic response – the vaccination phase. Like other vaccination locations, this site will be for those eligible under the state’s phasing plan that is designed to ensure that those most at risk are prioritized.

Mercer County also is working on opening a vaccination site  at Mercer County Community College that would be managed by the County Health Officers Association and utilize all of the resources and staffing available from the municipal and county health offices. The arena and MCCC vaccination locations will supplement, not replace, smaller sites including those currently being operated by municipal health departments and other health care facilities in Mercer County. If you have questions about the CURE Insurance Arena or MCCC vaccination sites, please email publichealth@mercercounty.org.

As of this morning, at least 7,342 vaccine doses had been administered in Mercer County, according to the state Department of Health. While we all want to see that number grow exponentially, we are simply not getting enough vaccine from the federal government, and we are using every single dose we receive. 

I ask that everyone be patient throughout what will be a months-long vaccination process and continue to take basic preventive measures to reduce the spread of the virus, which is still rampant in our community and seemingly everywhere else. Wear a mask that covers your nose and mouth; keep a least 6 feet away from other people; practice good hand hygiene; avoid large gatherings; and stay home if you are sick.

Anyone can – and everyone should – pre-register to receive a vaccination by visiting the state’s online portal at https://covidvaccine.nj.gov. The state expects to have a consumer call center up and running soon to assist people without Internet access in scheduling appointments, and to help answer general inquiries and questions. Those who have pre-registered will be notified when they are eligible to make a vaccination appointment. The state is compiling a list of designated vaccination locations for eligible recipients. That list will continue to grow.

For more information on who is eligible, and how to get vaccinated if you are eligible, please visit the state’s COVID-19 Vaccine website.

In addition to vaccinations, Mercer County continues to respond to the pandemic through testing, contact tracing and support. The County, in partnership with Vault Health Services, is offering a free COVID-19 saliva test on the next two Tuesdays – Jan. 19 and 26 – at the CURE Insurance Arena in Trenton. For details, please visit the COVID-19 Testing page on the County website, where you’ll also find information on the County’s at-home testing program.

These are trying times but we will get through them. Let’s continue to support each other and keep each other safe. Let’s continue to work together.

Brian M. Hughes

Mercer County Executive



Mercer County Prosecutor’s Detectives Arrest Trenton’s H-Block in Operation Eight-Ball

January 14, 2021

By: Tyler Eckel

Six-Month Investigation Yields 18 Arrests, Guns, $228,000 in Drugs

TRENTON (MERCER): Mercer County Prosecutor Angelo J. Onofri today announced that a six month, multi-jurisdictional investigation of narcotics distribution and violent crime in the  Mercer County area has culminated with the arrest of 18 individuals and the seizure of  approximately 1,000 grams of heroin, 1,000 grams of methamphetamine, 15 pounds of  marijuana, 11 guns, six vehicles and more than $22,000 in cash.  

“Operation Eight-Ball was an enormous investigative endeavor and as a result, many  violent offenders have been taken off of the street,” said Prosecutor Onofri. “I cannot  thank our many law enforcement partners enough for their dedication and assistance in  providing safer neighborhoods for the residents of Trenton and Mercer County.” 

“Our law enforcement challenges this year required a coordinated plan, and I’m thankful  for the city, county, state, and federal officers who stepped up to make Trenton a safer  place to live,” said Trenton Police Director Sheilah A. Coley. “In just this operation alone,  their hard work yielded multiple firearms, high-capacity magazines, kilograms of  narcotics, and more than 15 arrests, six of which are connected to several homicides.  This multi-tiered response awaits any criminal group that seeks to plague our streets with  drugs and violence.”

“This investigation makes clear the violence associated with drug trafficking,” said Susan  A. Gibson, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration’s New Jersey  Division. “Those targeted in this investigation brought violence and misery to the residents  of Mercer County. Their arrests have made the community safer, and DEA will continue  to work with our partners to pursue those who violate the law.” 

“In the spring of 2020, as the number of shootings and homicides in Trenton began  increasing at an alarming rate, we set out to expose trends and connections that might  be responsible for triggering the uptick in violence,” said Prosecutor Onofri. 

The Mercer County Narcotics Task Force, the Mercer County Homicide Task Force and  the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Economic Crime Unit, along with the Drug Enforcement  Administration, Homeland Security Investigations, the Federal Bureau of Investigation,  and many state, county and local police agencies, began their hard-hitting investigation  a short time later and dubbed the job “Operation Eight-Ball,” representing the eight-ball  logo used by Trenton’s H-Block, a violent criminal street gang responsible for numerous  shootings and murders in the city. According to Prosecutor Onofri, the initial investigation  focused on the alleged drug activities of H-Block, and through informant information,  controlled buys, surveillances and intelligence, authorities were able to obtain and  execute more than 40 warrants of individuals, vehicles and locations in New Jersey and  Pennsylvania.  

On November 4, 2020, search warrants were executed and arrests were made as this  investigation progressed. On this day, an undercover officer made arrangements to  purchase a quantity of heroin from Joseph Kaite. After conducting the narcotics  transaction with the undercover detective at a gas station on North Olden Avenue in  Trenton, detectives attempted to arrest Kaite, however, he fled in his vehicle. When  detectives attempted to stop Kaite, he collided with a police vehicle causing heavy  damage to both vehicles. He then attempted to flee on foot but was apprehended after a  brief struggle. Also arrested inside the vehicle were Vincent Bowman and Zaire Jones.  Search warrants related to the investigation were subsequently executed and detectives  located 30 bricks of heroin and a shotgun. At an apartment on Beakes Street in Trenton,  detectives located evidence related to murder of Derek Colley that resulted in homicide  charges being filed against Kaite and Tabika Hale. 

The investigation continued into 2021 and last week, search warrants were executed at  locations in Trenton and Ewing, New Jersey, and Bristol and Morrisville, Pennsylvania.  Prior to the execution of these warrants, surveillance officers followed Deshawn Abner as  he traveled by cab from Bond Street in Trenton to the Extended Stay Motel on Route 1 in  West Windsor where Abner and a second individual, identified as Aziz Stroman, were

observed searching a wooded area around the hotel. After searching the area for about  30 minutes, Abner was seen retrieving a box containing 210 bricks of heroin from the  bushes in the hotel parking lot. After retrieving the package, Abner entered the Mercedes  Benz Stroman had arrived in, and the two men departed the area. Arrest teams converged  on the area and both Abner and Stroman were eventually detained after attempting to  flee. A search warrant for Stroman’s Mercedes Benz was obtained and detectives located  210 bricks of heroin on the front passenger floor. Both Abner and Stroman were charged  with first-degree narcotic offenses. 

After Abner and Stroman were taken into custody, detectives contacted officers in Pennsylvania who had an individual identified as Ricardo Moise under observation.  Through the investigation, authorities had pinpointed Moise as the supplier of heroin to  North Trenton. At that time, Moise was seen moving items out of his apartment on Beaver  Street in Bristol Township, and detectives from the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office, with assistance from Bucks County District Attorney’s Office and the Bristol Borough  Police Department, arrested him for outstanding warrants as a result of distributing 75  bricks of heroin to an undercover officer in the spring of 2020. Search warrants were  subsequently executed at related locations. 

According to Prosecutor Onofri, the total retail value of the confiscated drugs is $228,000.  The heroin is valued at $60,000; the methamphetamine is valued at $100,000; and the  marijuana at $68,000. 

In addition to the narcotics, authorities also seized 11 guns, six vehicles and  approximately $22,000 in cash. Approximately 24 bank accounts in connection to the investigation were frozen and continue to be investigated by the Mercer County  Prosecutor’s Economic Crime Unit. 



As a result of this cooperative investigation, the following arrests were made with the  listed charges:  

Ricardo Moise, 31, Bristol, Pa. – Numerous narcotic-related offenses

Deshawn Abner, 31, Trenton – Numerous narcotic- and weapons-related offenses

Daishawn Dickerson, 30, Trenton – Numerous narcotic-related offenses

Aziz Stroman, 31, Trenton – Numerous narcotic- and weapons-related offenses

Zaire Jones, 20, Trenton – Conspiracy 

Vincent Bowman, 20, Trenton – Conspiracy 

Kashawn Batts, 33, Trenton – Numerous weapons-related offenses

Jaquane Leonard, 32, Trenton – Numerous weapons-related offenses

Joseph Kaite, 19, Trenton – Homicide, numerous narcotic and weapons offenses

Tabika Hale, 26, Trenton – Homicide and weapons offenses 

Aniyah Boone, 20, Bensalem, Pa. – Numerous narcotic-related offenses

Casimer Phillips, 22, Newtonville – Numerous narcotic-related offenses

Kevonte Bivens, 23, Montgomery, Alabama – Numerous narcotic-related offenses

Aleque Williams-Dixon, 21, Blackwood – Numerous narcotic-related offenses

Prince Attoh, 20, Trenton – Numerous narcotic-related offenses 

Additionally, information obtained during Operation Eight-Ball directly linked Tyzir Hamilton, 19, Treizon Thompson, 20, and Darnell Davis, 19, to the murders of William  Irizarry and Julius Vargas. Arrest warrants for the three defendants were obtained in  October 2020 and search warrants were also executed at several locations, which led to  the recovery of several weapons. 

Operation Eight-Ball developed over six months of investigation. It initiated with the  Mercer County Narcotics Task Force, the Mercer County Homicide Task Force and the  Mercer County Prosecutor’s Economic Crime Unit, and received support and resources  from 16 additional agencies including: 

  • Drug Enforcement Administration
  • Federal Bureau of Investigation
  • Homeland Security Investigations
  • New Jersey State Police Crime Suppression Central
  • Mercer County Sheriff’s Office
  • Bucks County District Attorney’s Office (PA)
  • Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office
  • Ewing Police Department
  • Hamilton Police Department
  • Lawrence Police Department
  • Princeton Police Department
  • Robbinsville Police Department
  • Trenton Police Department
  • West Windsor Police Department
  • Bristol Borough Police Department (PA)
  • The College of New Jersey Police Department

In the interest of investigative security and pursuant to established court requirements,  the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office is limited in discussing specific details regarding  the ongoing investigation and the alleged conspiracies. Despite having been charged, all  persons are presumed innocent until found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court  of law. 


UPDATE: 21 Year Old Kendall Park Resident Killed In Route 1 Crash

January 2, 2021

WEST WINDSOR, NJ (MERCER)–On Saturday January 2, 2021 at 9:07 am, Patrol & Traffic Units and the WW Division of Fire & Emergency Services were detailed to U.S. Route 1 North at Harrison Street for a Serious Motor Vehicle Collision.  Upon the arrival of responding Units, the individual inside of Vehicle #1, a 2017 Toyota Corolla, was found entrapped in the wreckage and exhibiting no signs of life.   U.S. Route 1 in both South and North directions needed to be fully closed.  

The initial investigation revealed the following: Vehicle #1, a 2017 Toyota Corolla was traveling Northbound on U.S. Route 1 North. Vehicle #2, a 2005 International Dump Truck, was traveling Westbound at the Harrison Street Jug handle and was attempting to continue straight on Harrison Street. The Toyota Corolla was traveling Northbound on U.S. Route 1 North and was approaching the Harrison Street intersection. The intersection is governed by a traffic signal. The traffic signal had been red for U.S. Route 1 traffic and green for the Harrison Street Jug handle traffic. The Toyota struck the International Dump Truck in the U.S. Route 1 Northbound lanes. The collision caused dump truck to overturn. Both Vehicles came to their final resting places in the intersection with dump truck remaining on its passenger’s side.

The 21 year old driver of the Toyota from Kendall Park, NJ was pronounced deceased at the scene. The Driver dump truck a 22 year old resident of Princeton was uninjured from the collision. There were no additional persons in either vehicle. U.S. Route 1 was closed in both directions for approximately 3 hours and 45 minutes. The WWPD Traffic Bureau & Detective Bureau in conjunction with the SCRT are continuing the investigation. If you have any pertinent information, please contact Traffic Officer McQuade at McQuade@westwindsorpolice.com or Traffic Sgt. Bal at Bal@westwindsorpolice.com or at (609) 799-1222.

**Identities withheld at this time**

Kendall Park, NJ is a section of South Brunswick Township, Middlesex County, NJ

 

Mercer County Health Officer Association Distribution Of Moderna Vaccine To Health Care Workers

The first Mercer County COVID-19 vaccine clinic was held in Hamilton today at Station 17

December 28, 2020

HAMILTON TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–Hamilton Township in collaboration with the Mercer County Health Officer Association (MCHOA) held the first COVID-19 vaccine clinic earlier today to Phase 1A healthcare workers.

In order to maximize COVID vaccination efforts, the Mercer County Health Officers Association has joined together to serve all communities within Mercer County throughout the four phases of the COVID-19 vaccination distribution. Under CDC and State health guidelines, the Moderna doses will first be distributed to healthcare workers who qualify under Phase 1A and who have not been vaccinated for COVID-19 through their employer or the federal Pharmacy Partnership for Long Term Care (LTC) Program administered through CVS and Walgreens.

This MCHOA is currently planning a series of COVID-19 vaccination clinics to support ongoing efforts to vaccinate healthcare workers which include emergency medical services. The MCHOA will administer the Moderna COVID-19 vaccinations at clinics throughout Mercer County municipalities point of dispensing (POD) locations.  The clinics will be held twice a week on a rotating schedule and have the capacity to handle 500 vaccines per week.. The COVID-19 vaccine clinics will be by appointment only and subject to the availability of vaccine doses on hand or accessible within the supply chain.

“Hamilton Township is proud to partner with the Mercer County Health Officer Association in order to ensure that those on the frontlines in our fight against this virus receive the vaccine as quickly as possible,” said Mayor Jeff Martin. “The arrival of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine is a continued step forward to provide protection to more of our community’s critical healthcare workforce and eventually the general adult population.”

“Vaccination is a critical component to protecting our residents,” stated Hamilton Township Health Officer Christopher Hellwig. “Working together to safeguard the citizens of Mercer County is exactly what the founding members of the MCHOA had in mind when they formed in 1972. Our vaccination clinics will continue that ideal and work to protect the public’s health particularly those that have been most impacted by COVID-19, while giving us a clear end to this pandemic.”

Local Health Departments are one piece of the puzzle to vaccinate the State goal of 70% of the adult population in 6 months. This collective effort will ensure that our residents are provided with the opportunity to receive their vaccination in a timely manner and in a safe medical setting.  COVID-19 vaccines will continue to be rolled out in phases determined by the State. The Mercer County Health Officers Association collaboration will continue to work closely with federal, state, and local partners.

Christmas Parade, Hospital Appreciation At UPenn Princeton Medical Center

December 18, 2020

Team coverage by: Dennis Symons, Tyler Eckel, and Brian McCarthy

PLAINSBORO, NJ (MIDDLESEX)–Firefighters, EMS, and police with over 50 pieces of apparatus took part in a hospital worker appreciation event tonight at UPenn Princeton Medical Center. Hosted by Plainsboro Fire Department and Police, many agencies came through to show their support for hospital workers.

Santa Claus, Mrs. Claus, and even the Grinch showed up to show their support riding in the fire department’s ladder towers and were able to see hospital employees though the windows of the hospital.

This is a partial list of those participated:

Plainsboro Fire, Plainsboro EMS, Plainsboro Police Department, West Windsor Police Department, Princeton University Pubic Safety, Kingston Fire Company, Monmouth Junction Fire Comapny, Kendal Park Fire Comapny, Hightstown Fire Department, Little Rocky Hill Fire Company, Griggstown Fire Company, Middlesex County Hazmat, Princeton Plasma Physics Lab Fire Department, South River Fire Department, Monroe Fire Company – 51, Lawrenceville Fire Company -23, North Brunswick Fire Company #1, North Brunswick Fire Comnpany #2, North Brunswick Fire Company #3, New Jersey State Forest Fire Service, NJSP Aviation Unit, East Windsor Rescue Squad, Princeton Rescue Squad, Mercer County Fire Coordinator, Hopewell Fire Department – 52





Above photos by: Tyler Eckel




Around 1,600 Pounds Of Frozen Turkey Distributed This Afternoon At Jerusalem Missionary Baptist Church

November 23, 2020

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–The Willing Workers of Jerusalem Missionary Baptist Church and members of Mercer County’s PBAs (Police Benevolent Associations) distributed frozen turkeys and food baskets late this afternoon at the church on North Clinton Avenue.

There were at least thirty boxes of frozen turkeys distributed with an average weight of around 55 pounds per box for a total of about 1,600 pounds. There were numerous baskets of food and turkey baking supplies provided to go along with the frozen birds.

There were several locations today for turkey distribution see this morning’s MidJersey.News story here: Mercer County PBA Assists With Turkey Distribution



Mercer County PBA Assists With Turkey Distribution

November 23, 2020

By: Tyler Eckel

HAMILTON TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–All chapters of the Mercer County PBA are assisting with turkey distribution in Mercer County today. This morning at Saint Phillips Baptist Church, members unloaded over 600 pounds of turkey for distribution at that location.

There were two other locations with many more pounds donated this morning including the Hamilton YMCA.

The distribution will continue this evening at the Willing Workers of Jerusalem Baptist Church in Trenton at 4:00 pm.



Mercer County Offering Free COVID-19 Testing November 24 & December 1 at Cure Arena

Mercer County is also proud to offer free at-home COVID-19 testing. These tests are available to all residents of Mercer County, free of charge.

November 18, 2020

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Mercer County Executive Brian M. Hughes today announced that the County, in partnership with Vault Health Services, will offer free COVID-19 testing on Tuesday, Nov. 24, and Tuesday, Dec. 1, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the CURE Insurance Arena, 81 Hamilton Ave. The saliva test is available to County residents 14 years or older and anyone employed as a first responder or health care worker in Mercer County.

Those going to the arena for testing should use Parking Lot 2 off South Broad Street to access Gate A. Testing will be conducted in the arena concourse. Bring identification showing Mercer County residency and a smartphone or tablet if you have one. No prescription is necessary. Please avoid eating, drinking, chewing gum or smoking 30 minutes prior to taking the test.

Testing will be limited to 300 people on each of the two days but additional pop-up testing sites will be scheduled around the County in the near future.

If you want to avoid the lines, Mercer County also offers an at-home saliva test for COVID-19, which can be requested by visiting www.mercercares.org. If you need help with the online registration process, assistance will be available Tuesday at the arena. 



Covid-19 Test at Home Program

Mercer County is proud to offer free at-home COVID-19 testing. These tests are available to all residents of Mercer County, free of charge.

The saliva collection test for COVID-19 has the same effectiveness as the nasal swab test. This test is performed under the supervision of our healthcare provider, Vault, through a video telehealth visit eliminating the risk of person-to-person exposure to the virus.

To register for your at-home testing kit, you must first fill out the form below to verify your Mercer County residency. Within 24-48 hours following your submission, you will receive a link to order your free kit on the Vault Health website. This is FREE to all Mercer County residents, and health insurance is not required but a claim will be submitted if are covered.

Please note the following:

  1. There is no out of pocket cost for this test.
  2. You must be a resident of Mercer County or employed as a first responder or health care worker in Mercer County.
  3. Only persons over the age of 14 are eligible for this test. Persons under the age of 18 should have a parent or guardian complete the registration for them.
  4. You will receive your code within 48 hours.
  5. This is not an antibody test. This test is designed to determine if you currently are infected with COVID-19 and have the potential to infect others.

If your test is positive, or if you have symptoms, call your health care professional.

Mayors And Local Government Officials Warn New COVID-19 Cases On Rise And To Take Precautions

November 14, 2020

MERCER COUNTY, NJ–Mayors and local officials warn of increased COVID-19 transmission as cases rise in Mercer County. Officials are reminding residents to continue to take precautions by limiting gatherings, wearing masks, social distancing, washing hands and other general COVID-19 precautions.

In the City of Trenton Mayor W. Reed Gusciora has announced new restrictions as COVID-19 transmission rates have doubled in each of the last three weeks.

Trenton’s transmission rate is currently 44.2 cases per 100,000 people, which exceeds both the state and county rates at 29.3 and 28.9, respectively. Trenton has had a total of 4,598 COVID-19 cases with 80 related deaths.

Mercer County Executive Brian M. Hughes stated, Mercer County surpassed 10,000 cumulative positive test results since the start of the pandemic, and the United States surpassed a staggering 10 million positive cases. In addition, the New Jersey Department of Health has reported more than 13,000 positive cases statewide since Monday.

It was anticipated that colder weather in the fall and winter would drive people indoors and trigger a second wave of virus transmissions. We’re only in mid-November and the second wave is here. New cases of COVID-19 are on the rise and everyone needs to take that seriously, County Executive Hughes stated.

Robbinsville Township Mayor Dave Fried said in a Facebook post, “I always like to start with good news, but a second wave of COVID-19 is upon us and it is making that increasingly difficult. I am going to give this to you straight. Since October 30, Robbinsville Township reports 29 new cases that is by far the highest number of new cases we have encountered since this started.”

Mayor Fried also stated in a message that My personal feeling is this second wave will get worse before it gets better, so I am asking people to be increasingly diligent.

Hamilton Township Mayor Jeff Martin shared the weekly update from Hamilton Township that includes a weekly COVID-19 update and that urges the following precautions:

•Keep Your Distance — stay at least six feet away from others — and Wear a Face Covering.

•Wash Your Hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after being in a public place, as well as after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing

.•If soap and water are not accessible, Use a Hand Sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.

•Avoid Touching Your Eyes, Nose and Mouth with unwashed hands.•Avoid Close Contact with people who are sick.

•Stay Home if you are sick, except to get medical care. Learn what to do if you are sick.

•Cover Your Mouth and Nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow.


Full text of statements below:


TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Mayor W. Reed Gusciora yesterday announced new restrictions aimed at slowing the spread of COVID-19 as transmission rates in Trenton have doubled each of the last three weeks.

Mayor Gusciora’s amended State of Emergency declaration now includes the following instructions, which will remain in effect from Nov. 16, 2020 through Dec. 5, 2020:

  • All Trenton businesses, including restaurants, bars and grocery stores must close at 10:00 p.m. daily. Gas stations may stay open only to dispense gas.
  • Restaurants and drive-through businesses may be open for pickup or delivery until 11:00 p.m., provided that no parties are allowed to congregate inside or outside of the establishment.
  • All city residents are encouraged to remain indoors after 10:00 p.m.
  • All city residents should wear masks and practice social distancing techniques as recommended by the CDC by avoiding large crowds, and, whenever possible, keeping a distance of six feet from other people.
  • All city residents are strongly encouraged not to have large family gatherings on Thanksgiving and to avoid hosting visitors from states that are on the Governor’s travel advisory list.

Trenton’s transmission rate is currently 44.2 cases per 100,000 people, which exceeds both the state and county rates at 29.3 and 28.9, respectively. Trenton has had a total of 4,598 COVID-19 cases with 80 related deaths.

“It’s clear the second wave is here and has hit the Capital City especially hard,” said Mayor Gusciora. “Our transmission rates may even be higher now than they were in the spring. While we believe these new restrictions will help, we won’t get past this crisis unless our residents wear their masks and practice social distancing. No more excuses about COVID-19 fatigue: the virus never gets tired, and neither should our residents and businesses when it comes to keeping this city safe.”

“It is critically important that when we see cases rise throughout our city, county and state that we are extremely cautious and we social distance, wear masks and limit indoor gatherings as much as possible,” said Dr. Kemi Alli, Chief Executive Officer of the Henry J. Austin Health Center. “If not, our path will follow sister states such as North and South Dakota, and Montana which are currently in dire straits.”

While transmission rates have risen across all age groups, a quarter of all hospitalizations over the past month are comprised of individuals age 30 and below. The greatest source of transmission has been indoor contact, and residents are advised to wear masks even around friends or relatives who are visiting.


Mercer County, NJ:

A letter from County Executive Brian M. Hughes

Mercer County and the nation both reached sobering COVID-19 milestones this week: Mercer County surpassed 10,000 cumulative positive test results since the start of the pandemic, and the United States surpassed a staggering 10 million positive cases. In addition, the New Jersey Department of Health has reported more than 13,000 positive cases statewide since Monday. It was anticipated that colder weather in the fall and winter would drive people indoors and trigger a second wave of virus transmissions. We’re only in mid-November and the second wave is here. New cases of COVID-19 are on the rise and everyone needs to take that seriously.

When you’re around people outside your own household, wear a mask that covers your nose and mouth and practice social distancing. Wash your hands frequently and use hand sanitizer. Avoid crowds and stay home if you are sick. Public health officials are advising that the safest way to celebrate Thanksgiving this year is to keep your gathering small with just immediate family. Please bear that in mind when planning for the holiday. We know what we need to do to reduce the spread of the virus – now it’s up to us. Let’s continue to support each other and keep each other safe. Let’s continue to work together.

One of the many impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic has been job loss. State officials reported this week that more than 1.7 million New Jersey workers have filed an unemployment claim since March, with about 1.46 million workers meeting the monetary requirements to receive benefits. Jobseekers need all the help they can get, and with that in mind I’d like to call attention to the work being done by the staff at the Mercer County One-Stop Career Center.

As part of Mercer County’s ongoing effort to connect jobseekers with employers, and do it safely during the public health crisis, our One-Stop recently held a drive-through job fair at the CURE Insurance Arena in Trenton that had the participation of 45 employers and was attended by about 525 individuals. Attendees were required to wear face masks but did not have to leave their vehicles. When they pulled up, they were handed a bag filled with information provided by employers on the jobs they had available, along with information about One-Stop services and community resources. This was a successful effort to help people in our community find work.

The inventive job fair came on the heels of the One-Stop’s equally successful Summer Youth Jobs Connection program. After receiving grant funding from the state in early June, One-Stop Director Virgen Velez and her staff set about making the summer job program a reality, despite a small time window and challenges presented by the pandemic. The program, which served Mercer County residents between the ages of 16 and 24, provided a paid six-week work experience and paid virtual job readiness workshops, along with transportation assistance.

I join the One-Stop and the County’s Workforce Development Board in thanking the employers who brought interns into their facilities this summer. The young adults learned not only traditional work skills but the virtual communication skills that have become essential in the COVID-19 work and school environment. And I applaud the One-Stop team, whose passionate commitment enabled it to deliver a summer employment program and job fair amid a pandemic.

Brian M. Hughes
Mercer County Executive


Robbinsville, NJ:

Mayor Dave Fried:

I always like to start with good news, but a second wave of COVID-19 is upon us and it is making that increasingly difficult. I am going to give this to you straight. Since October 30, Robbinsville Township reports 29 new cases that is by far the highest number of new cases we have encountered since this started.

Thankfully, we have not seen significant spread or sickness in our three schools. We are seeing an uptick in cases throughout Mercer County, including increased positives reported by our first responders and front line workers resulting in staffing shortages. We have seen an uptick in hospitalizations across Mercer County.

My personal feeling is this second wave will get worse before it gets better, so I am asking people to be increasingly diligent. We have kids coming home from college for Thanksgiving, and while I am not going to tell you how to host or visit your families, I am asking you to be smart.

There are some things you can do to minimize the spread, such as not sharing glassware or silverware. Try to be more aware when eating in groups. Wash your hands regularly and wear a mask when you can. While many of our cases have been asymptotic, our fear as flu season approaches is we may see people with multiple symptoms for both COVID-19 and the flu, or family members suffering from both in the same household. We are on stand-by to help and volunteer when and where we are needed. We hope you will join us as that need increases.

Additionally, our kids still need to socialize in the face of the virus. That said our Recreation Department, in conjunction with the school district, will be coming up with programs to help keep our children safely engaged. This is a difficult and complex decision … and it will not be for everyone. There will be no right or wrong. It really comes down to what is best for your family, while not judging others.

I am very proud of our community for all it has done to flatten this curve. You all have been rock stars, and it is a pleasure to be Mayor of this incredible town. Keep your chins up. Pfizer has announced they have a vaccine and early reports indicate it is 90 percent effective, so help should be on the way.

We will get through this together. Thank you all for all you do, and God bless you all. —Robbinsville Mayor Dave Fried


Mercer County Firemen’s Association 2020 Memorial Service

November 5, 2020

HAMILTON TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–The Mercer County Firemen’s Association 2020 Memorial Service that was originally scheduled for May 6, 2020 was postponed several times due to the COVID-19 Pandemic. This year’s Memorial Service was held at Colonial Fire Company Hamilton Township Station 18 and was hosted by Union Fire Company Hopewell Township Station 53. Hamilton Township Station 18 has a large hall and is big enough to hold the service while complying with COVID-19 guidelines.

The annual Memorial Service is held to honor members of Mercer County Firemen’s Ladies Auxiliary and Firefighters in Mercer County. All fire departments in Mercer County are represented and Hope Fire Company of Allentown, Monmouth County is also a member.

This year’s Memorial Roll was read honored 14 Ladies Auxiliary members and 36 firefighters. As each name is read a white carnation is placed in a Maltese cross and firefighters salute and family members stand as the name of their loved one is read.


2020 Mercer County Firemen’s Association Memorial Service. Video by Dick Cunningham, Broadcast Productions-East Windsor Station 46


Mercer County: General Election Vote By Mail Secured Drop Box Locations

All Drop Boxes will be open by October 5, 2020 until General Election Night of November 3, 2020 at 8:00 pm.

October 4, 2020

ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–Recently a secured election ballot drop box has been installed at the Robbinsville Township Municipal Building. The box is to the left of the rear parking lot entrance to the building. Just look for the flag pole and the box is in that location. There are also signs located in the parking lot to show the way to the secure drop box.


Robbinsville Township Municipal Clerk Michele Seigfried explains the 2020 General Election process on November 3 in the wake of COVID-19 in this informative video.


For the most up to date information on the 2020 elections and drop box locations visit the Mercer County Board of Elections website here and here: Mercer County Board Of Elections

All Active Registered Voters will receive a Mail-In-Ballot that can be placed in a drop box at any one of the fifteen (15) locations (see below), mailed, or hand delivered at the polling location on November 3 from 5:15 am-8:00 pm.

Drop boxes will be open beginning in October 2020 until General Election Night of November 3, 2020 at 8:00 pm.



Secured Drop Box Locations

Please Note: We anticipate more drop boxes, however, at this time do not know how many and in what locations they will be placed. Any and all changes will be updated on the website.

** All Drop Boxes will be open by October 5, 2020

EAST WINDSOR:

  • East Windsor Police Station – 80 One Mile Road, East Windsor, NJ, 08520 (Courthouse)

EWING:

  • Ewing Municipal Building – 2 Jake Garzio Drive, Ewing, NJ, 08628 (In Front)

HAMILTON:

  • Hamilton Golf/Call Center – 5 Justice Samuel A. Alito Way, Hamilton, NJ, 08619
  • Hamilton Municipal Building – 2090 Greenwood Avenue, Hamilton, NJ, 08609 (Right side of Bldg.)
  • Nottingham Firehouse – 200 Mercer Street, Hamilton Square, NJ, 08690 (Right side of Bldg.)

HIGHTSTOWN:

  • Hightstown Firehouse #1 – 140 N. Main Street, Hightstown, NJ, 08520 (Front of Bldg.)

HOPEWELL TWP:

  • Hopewell Township Administration Building – 201 Washington Crossing-Pennington Rd, Titusville, NJ 08560 (at the intersection of Scotch Road)

LAWRENCE:

  • Lawrence Municipal Building – 2207 Lawrenceville Rd, (Rt 206) Lawrence, NJ 08648 (North Side-Right Side of the Municipal Bldg.)

PRINCETON:

  • Princeton Municipal Building – 400 Witherspoon St, Princeton, NJ, 08540(Front of Bldg. facing  Witherspoon)

ROBBINSVILLE:

  • Robbinsville Municipal Building, 2298 NJ-33, Robbinsville, NJ 08691 (In back parking lot of Municipal Bldg.)

TRENTON:

  • County Clerk’s Office- Courthouse Annex- 209 S. Broad Street, Trenton, NJ, 08608 (in front)
  • Trenton City Hall – 319 E. State Street, Trenton, NJ, 08608 (In back/ near Municipal Clerks Office)
  • Henry J. Austin Center – 321 N. Warren St, Trenton, NJ, 08618(Corner of Tucker)
  • Trenton Central High School – 400 Chambers Street, Trenton, NJ, 08609(across from McDonald’s)

WEST WINDSOR:

  • West Windsor Municipal Complex, 271 Clarksville Rd, West Windsor, NJ,08550 (Between the Municipal building and the Senior Center)

Home Energy Assistance Available To Eligible Mercer County Residents, LIHEAP Application Period Opens Today

October 1, 2020

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Mercer County Executive Brian M. Hughes is reminding residents that assistance is available for energy costs for those who qualify beginning Oct. 1, but that applicants must adhere to certain COVID-19 restrictions. The County’s Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP), offered in coordination with the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs, is designed to help low-income families and individuals meet home heating and medically necessary cooling costs.This year, the LIHEAP application period is Oct. 1, 2020, to July 31, 2021. Mercer County will continue accepting applications for the Universal Service Fund (USF) Program throughout the year. Residents who pay their own heating costs, and meet the income guidelines, may be eligible to receive financial assistance with their winter heating bill. Residents with medical conditions also may be eligible to receive cooling assistance. An eligibility chart can be found on the Mercer County website.

“The effects of the COVID-19 pandemic have created financial hardships for many households that now have to worry about the cost of heating and other energy bills,” Mr. Hughes said. “I urge our low-income residents to visit our website or contact the County housing office to determine their eligibility to apply for energy assistance.”

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the public may visit the Mercer County Office of Housing and Community Development, located at 640 South Broad St., Trenton, by appointment only. If an in-person visit is necessary, clients can call 609-337-0933 or email heatingappt@mercercounty.org to schedule an appointment.

Beginning Oct. 1, the County will temporarily begin operating an outdoor informational center adjacent to the 640 South Broad St. building. Clients will be able to drop off applications and access information from LIHEAP staff. 

The County will continue to accept applications by regular mail, fax and email until July 31, 2021. Applications, forms and information are available on the Mercer County website.

Princeton Police To Wear Body Cameras Starting Today

October 1, 2020

PRINCETON, NJ (MERCER)–As many area police departments have already started wearing body cameras Princeton Police Department starts today.

Beginning October 1, 2020 Princeton Police officers will begin wearing body worn cameras on patrol. In addition to having in-car video cameras in their patrol vehicles, officers will be equipped with the Axon 3 Body Camera. It functions as a camera and DVR combination to collect video evidence.

The Princeton Police Department’s goals and objectives in deploying body worn cameras are the accurate documentation of infractions between our officers and members of the public, arrests, and other critical incidents. The use of the cameras increases transparency and also provides and opportunity to capture the good work that the police officers do on a daily basis. Additionally, this equipment will enable department supervisors and administrators to conduct periodic reviews of officer-citizen contacts, for quality control purposes and will aid in the investigation of citizen complaints.

“The implementation of body worn cameras is an example of the police department’s commitment to being transparent with our community. Additionally, the officers of the Princeton Police Department have embraced the use of the cameras and understand their need in policing today.” stated Captain Christopher Morgan.

The officer’s use of the body work cameras will follow the guidelines issued by the New Jersey Attorney General and the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office, along with the polices set by the Princeton Police Department.

2020 Police Unity Tour Bike Ride Held In NJ


See related MidJersey.News coverage here: Police Unity Tour Memorial Service And Blessing Of Riders


September 27, 2020

Check back for more photos, still having photos sent into MidJersey.News and will be updated again tomorrow or later tonight.

STAFFORD TOWNSHIP, NJ (OCEAN)–The Police Unity Tour held a one day bike ride today starting in Asbury Park and proceeding on shore routes towards Stafford Township ending at the Stafford Township Police Memorial.

This year’s spring four day ride that is usually held in May was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic that ends at the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, D.C. 

This year’s ride was shortened to one day and two hundred sixty police officers participated from fourteen states including California and Missouri.


History of the Police Unity Tour:

In 1997, Florham Park (NJ) Police Officer Patrick Montuore had a simple idea: organize a four-day bicycle ride from New Jersey to Washington, DC to raise public awareness about law enforcement officers who have died in the line of duty, and to ensure that their sacrifice is never forgotten. With that, the Police Unity Tour was formed. 

What started with 18 riders on a four day fund-raising bicycle ride from Florham Park, NJ to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, D.C. has grown into 9 chapters consisting of nearly 2,600 members nationwide who make the trip annually. Participants include riders, motorcycles, and support personnel.

The journey is long and challending but for the Police Unity Tour participants it is what they prepare for throughout the year. Through fundraising and physical training, they know that their efforts raise awareness of the ultimate sacrifice made by so many law enforcement officers. 

The last leg of the jouney ends at the Memorial, where the participants are greeted by friends, family, and survirors. Once there, many Police Unity Tour members present remembrance braclets worn on their wrists throughout the journey to the families of the fallen. 

May 2020, the Police Unity Tour was proud to donate more than $2.0 million to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, bringing our total donations to more than $30 million since their inception. 

The Police Unity Tour is the sponsor of the National Law Enforcement Museum’s Hall of Remembrance, the Memorial Fund’s Officer of the Month Award, and Recently Fallen Alert programs. 








Video provided by: Bucky For Sherriff










Police Unity Tour Memorial Service And Blessing Of Riders

Police Unity Tour “We Ride For Those Who Died”


See related MidJersey.News coverage of the event here: 2020 Police Unity Tour Bike Ride Held In NJ


September 26, 2020

HAMILTON TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–This evening the Hamilton Township Police Department hosted a memorial service and blessing of riders that are in tomorrow’s Police Unity Tour ride from Asbury Park to Stafford Twp., NJ.

The primary purpose of the Police Unity Tour is to raise awareness of Law Enforcement Officers who have died in the line of duty. The secondary purpose is to raise funds for the National Law Enforcement Officer’s Memorial.

Normally the ride would be held in May when several Chapters of the Police Unity Tour leave New Jersey on bicycles and ride to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, D.C. The over 250 mile journey on bicycles takes 4 days to complete riding at least 62 miles per day.

This year’s spring ride was canceled due to COVID-19 but the Police Unity Tour was able to schedule a one day ride on Sunday.

Some history on the Police Unity Tour:

In 1997, Florham Park (NJ) Police Officer Patrick Montuore had a simple idea: organize a four-day bicycle ride from New Jersey to Washington, DC to raise public awareness about law enforcement officers who have died in the line of duty, and to ensure that their sacrifice is never forgotten. With that, the Police Unity Tour was formed.

What started with 18 riders on a four day fund-raising bicycle ride from Florham Park, NJ to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, D.C. has grown into 9 chapters consisting of nearly 2,600 members nationwide who make the trip annually. Participants include riders, motorcycles, and support personnel.

The journey is long and challending but for the Police Unity Tour participants it is what they prepare for throughout the year. Through fundraising and physical training, they know that their efforts raise awareness of the ultimate sacrifice made by so many law enforcement officers.

The last leg of the jouney ends at the Memorial, where the participants are greeted by friends, family, and survirors. Once there, many Police Unity Tour members present remembrance braclets worn on their wrists throughout the journey to the families of the fallen.

May 2020, the Police Unity Tour was proud to donate more than $2.0 million to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, bringing our total donations to more than $30 million since their inception.

The Police Unity Tour is the sponsor of the National Law Enforcement Museum’s Hall of Remembrance, the Memorial Fund’s Officer of the Month Award, and Recently Fallen Alert programs.