ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–Recent banners placed at the Foxmoor Shopping Center on Washington Boulevard indicate Planet Fitness is still coming to Robbinsville. According to one store owner in the center the banners were noticed late last week and it was good news that the fitness center and academy were still coming to the shopping center. The store owner believes the delay is because of the COVID-19 pandemic.
HIGHTSTOWN, NJ (MERCER)–A man became trapped near the falls when he entered the Peddie Lake under his own volition this morning around 8:36 am. and had to be rescued according to Hightstown Borough Police Department, Sergeant Benjamin L. Miller.
Hightstown Police stated that on Saturday, January 23, 2021, at 8:36 a.m., officers were dispatched to the Peddie Lake, near the waterfalls, Main Street, for a male in the lake. Upon arrival, officers observed an elderly male subject standing, who appeared disoriented, in the lake; the officers immediately requested the Hightstown Fire Department’s water rescue unit and an ambulance for the extraction and care of the subject. The subject was assisted by fire personnel up a ladder and removed from the lake. The subject was transported to Princeton Medical Center by the Hightstown First Aid Squad for evaluation.
Responding the the scene, Hightstown Police Department, Hightstown Fire Company, Capital Health Paramedics, and Hightstown First Aid Squad. Robbinsville Township Fire Department, East Windsor and Plainsboro Fire Departments were dispatched but were not needed and turned around en-route.
TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Once again, Mercer County Sheriff Jack Kemler has issued a warning to area residents regarding telephone scammers posing as Mercer County Sheriff’s Officers. Over the past month, the Mercer County Sheriff’s Office has received numerous complaints about suspected phone scams asking residents for personal bank account information or cash payments. Some calls have reached residents throughout New Jersey and Pennsylvania. The scammers identify themselves as Mercer County Sheriff’s Officers along with fictitious badge numbers. The callers state they have an arrest warrant related to money laundering charges and need access to their bank accounts. The scammers also suggest meeting at a location and to bring cash for bail or fines. Otherwise, they will be taken into custody. “I can state with confidence the Mercer County Sheriff’s Office will never call anyone and ask for their bank account number or to meet in an odd location to pay bail or fines with cash,” said Sheriff Kemler.Unfortunately, it is difficult to crack down on telephone scammers because calls are often generated from phone banks located out of state. While the calls remain under investigation, the best advice is to exercise common sense. If a resident suspects a particular telephone call may be a scam, do not give out any personal information and simply hang up. Anyone who receives such a call and is uncertain of its validity should report the call to the Mercer County Sheriff’s Office at 609-989-6111.
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)— The Robbinsville Board of Education is seeking two (2) qualified candidates for membership to the Robbinsville School Board. The Board, within the powers delegated to it by law, is the policy-making legislative branch of the School District. These two positions to be filled will replace Shaina Ciaccio and Craig Heilman who resigned in December for personal reasons.
If appointed, the term will run through December 31, 2021. Both positions will be placed on the ballot for the annual election in November 2021; one for a full three-year term and the other for a one-year unexpired term.
Individuals considering applying, must meet the following qualifications: • A citizen of the United States of America • At least 18 years of age • Able to read and write • A resident of the Township of Robbinsville for at least one (1) year preceding the date of appointment • Not directly/indirectly interested in a contract with a claim against the Board • Registered to vote in the District • Not disqualified as a voter pursuant to NJSA 19:4-1 • Has not been disqualified due to the conviction of a crime or offense listed in N.J.S.A. 18A:12-1
Interested candidates should submit a letter of interest and resume by noon on February 3, 2021 to Nick Mackres Business Administrator/Board Secretary, Robbinsville Board of Education, 155 Robbinsville Edinburg Road, Robbinsville, NJ 08691 or via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Board of Education will review all qualifying applicants at the February 3rd Special Board Meeting at 5:00 p.m.
The Robbinsville Board of Education is an organization of elected citizens and residents living in the district. Once a member has been elected to the Board, they gain the right to vote on proceedings concerning the school district. The Board of Education is responsible for a wide variety of transactions and decisions that are made in the district. Robbinsville Township School District is comprised of an elementary school, middle school and high school providing services to over 3,200 students.
ROBBINSVILLE-EAST WINDSOR TOWNSHIPS, NJ (MERCER)–Robbinsville Township firefighters responded to the 500 Block of Perrineville Road at 6:47 am for a car into a utility pole with injuries. Upon arrival of Robbinsville Police, fire and EMS the person was still in vehicle with wires one the vehicle. Jersey Central Power & Light JCP&L was notified and responded. The person was removed from the vehicle and transported to a local hospital.
At 8:28 am the Robbinsville Township Fire Department, Hightstown Fire Company, East Windsor First Aid, Robbinsville EMS responded to the New Jersey Turnpike for an overturned tractor trailer with reported entrapment. The accident happened in the north bound outer roadway (truck lanes) mile marker 66.0 about 1 mile prior to Exit 8 and blocked all the lanes of the outer roadway. When fire and EMS personnel arrived the driver was able to get out of the vehicle on their own power. Currently the roadway has reopened but one lane remains closed.
TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Mercer County plans on opening an COVID-19 vaccination site at CURE Insurance Arena in Trenton in partnership with Capital Health System. An additional vaccination site is planned at Mercer County Community College and will be managed by the County Health Officer’s Association. See full press rease below from Mercer County Executive Brian M. Hughes:
Dear Mercer County Community,
The State of New Jersey this week ramped up its COVID-19 vaccination efforts, and Mercer County is preparing to do the same. The County will open a vaccination site at CURE Insurance Arena in Trenton in partnership with Capital Health System, which will manage the site. The opening date is dependent on vaccine supply but a soft opening is planned next week.
We had a successful partnership with Capital Health during the COVID-19 testing program we established last spring, and I can’t think of a more fitting partner for this next phase of the pandemic response – the vaccination phase. Like other vaccination locations, this site will be for those eligible under the state’s phasing plan that is designed to ensure that those most at risk are prioritized.
Mercer County also is working on opening a vaccination site at Mercer County Community College that would be managed by the County Health Officers Association and utilize all of the resources and staffing available from the municipal and county health offices. The arena and MCCC vaccination locations will supplement, not replace, smaller sites including those currently being operated by municipal health departments and other health care facilities in Mercer County. If you have questions about the CURE Insurance Arena or MCCC vaccination sites, please email email@example.com.
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.
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:
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.
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–Mayor Dave Fried presided over the swearing-in of new Township Councilwoman Deborah Blakely today inside the Municipal Public Meeting Room. Mrs. Blakely, accompanied on the dais by daughters Maggie and Brielle, was selected by Council on January 7 to fill the unexpired seat of Dan Schuberth. Her first meeting as a member of the governing body will be January 28.
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–At 6:41 am the Robbinsville Township Fire Department along with the Hamilton Township Fire Department were dispatched to a truck fire on the NJ Turnpike. The truck was fully engulfed and on the south bound side of the highway just prior to the Exit 7 A ramp. Firefighters called for additional mutual aid tankers to bring water to the scene from East Windsor and Monroe Township. Firefighting foam was also applied to bring the fire under control. Firefighters had the fire knocked down just after 8:00 am but were still on scene at the time of this report. This is a preliminary breaking news report, check back for further details.
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–Robbinsville Township Council members selected Deborah Blakely to fill the unexpired seat vacated by Dan Schuberth at their annual reorganization meeting Thursday.
Mrs. Blakely is 20-year resident of Robbinsville and a graduate of Trenton State College (BS) and Saint John’s University (MA). She has worked for Mercer County Special Services since 1996 as a Speech/Language Pathologist, specializing in early childhood communication disorders.
Mr. Schuberth’s resignation became effective on January 1, 2021 and has relocated his family to Washington, D.C.
Also Thursday, Mike Cipriano was elected Council president for the first time. Vince Calcagno, the longest serving Councilperson, was elected vice president for the seventh time.
Because of when that vacancy occurred, Title 40 of the NJ Statute allows Council to make a temporary appointment to the vacancy until an election can be conducted to fill the seat. This appointment will be for approximately 11 months, until the election results in November, 2021 are certified by the Mercer County Clerk. Council had a window of 30 days to make an appointment.
The law does not require an official application process or formal interviews; it only states that the appointee be a registered voter who has lived in Robbinsville for at least one year. This process is different than in partisan governments.
In partisan governments, Council is given a choice of only three candidates from the political party of the person who vacated the seat.
In non-partisan Robbinsville, any voter who has lived in town for one year was eligible to be appointed.
In a joint statement, Council members said:
“We want to thank everyone who expressed an interest in serving the public on Council. While all the candidates to come forward have a connection to the town and a strong desire to serve, there was one with a history and a connection we felt was unparalleled. Debbie Blakely is highly respected and well known to the entire governing body and Administration, which was an important factor as well.”
Mrs. Blakely has lived in Robbinsville since 2001. She is mother to two daughters, Brielle and Maggie, who are currently enrolled in the Robbinsville School District. Widow to the late Tom Blakely, who previously served on the zoning board. Blakely Park on Meadowbrook Road is named after Tom.
Mrs. Blakely is a strong advocate for grieving children, the special needs population and an animal lover. She in an active volunteer with Ability Tree of New Jersey.
“I am very proud to that Debbie has agreed to serve as a member of our Council,” Mayor Dave Fried said. “I have known Debbie for many years. She is thoughtful, caring and highly respected in the Robbinsville community. She will be a great addition to Council. I am also very encouraged that so many residents expressed interest and were willing to serve on the governing body. We are who we are in Robbinsville because of the willingness of so many to volunteer and serve others.”
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–The Robbinsville Township Fire Department and Police Department responded to Hibiscus Lane for a chimney fire just after 2:00 am. When police and firefighters arrived they found smoke and fire coming from the walls of the home near the fire place and called for an “all hands” fire sending additional units from Hamilton Township Fire Department, Hightstown Fire Department, Windsor Fire Company and Hope Fire Company of Allentown to the scene.
Firefighters pulled multiple hand lines and laddered the structure to combat the fire. Firefighters found fire in the walls around the chimney and fire was extending up the chimney wrap to the top of the chimney. Firefighters used saws and axes to open walls and the exterior chimney to extinguish the fire. The bulk of fire was quickly knocked down but took an approximately 30 minutes to fully bring the fire under control and extinguishing hot spots.
The Robbinsville Township Fire Marshal was en route to the scene to investigate the fire. No cause will be released until after the investigation is completed. No further information is available at this time.
UPDATE: NJ State Police Sgt. Philip Curry from the NJSP Public Information Bureau told MidJersey.news that the crash scene was still active but was able to give some details. The accident occurred at 5:45pm at MP 57.7 southbound on the outer roadway. It appears that it was involving three vehicles. Two occupants from one of the vehicles needed to be extricated and were transported to area hospitals with non-life threatening injuries. Another driver was arrested for suspicion of DUI and was found to be in possession of marijuana. That is all the information available at this time.
Earlier MidJersey.news story:
HAMILTON TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–Around 5:45 pm, the Robbinsville and Bordentown Township Fire Departments, Robbinsville FD EMS, Capital Health Paramedics, and RWJ EMS were dispatched to the NJ Turnpike for a serious crash at 57.7 South Bound. It appears that a tractor-trailer hit two vehicles, entrapping two in one of the vehicles in the outer lanes. Bordentown and Robbinsville firefighters arrived on scene and started extricating the trapped occupants. Mutual aid was called from Hamilton Township Fire Department for additional assistance. Once extricated, Robbinsville FD EMS and RWJ EMS transported the two patients to the Trauma Center at Capital Health Regional Medical Center. NJ State Police are investigating the crash.
HAMILTON TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–Robbinsville Fire-EMS was detailed to the NJ Turnpike at 12:30 pm for an accident at Mile Marker 59.9 North Bound Outer Lanes just south of interchange 7A. Bordentown Fire and EMS was also detailed, but recalled due to the minor injuries involved. It appeared that a dump truck and a car collided where both went though a guard rail and came to rest in a ditch. Robbinsville Fire Department was also busy with a serious gas leak at the same time, so just the ambulance and Bordentown Township Fire Department responded to the crash.
Then again about 1:45 pm in another emergency call to the NJ Turnpike, this time in front of the Woodrow Wilson Service Area at Mile Marker 58.5 North Bound Outer Roadway. It appeared that a tractor-trailer with a shipping container rear ended a tractor-trailer bulk tank. It was reported the driver was thrown though the windshield and was lying on the roadway right in front of the truck. Since Robbinsville FD was still tied up with the serious gas leak, Bordentown Township Fire Department and Hamilton Township Fire Department responded to the scene. Bordentown EMS, Capital Health Paramedics, and RWJ EMS transported at least one person to the Trauma Center at Capital Health Regional Medical Center in Trenton.
This breaking news report is from radio reports and on scene reporting, once official information is received from the NJ State Police Public Information Bureau the story will be updated and any corrections made.
Accident 1 at mile marker 59.9 North Bound Outer roadway:
Accident 2 at mile marker 58.5 North Bound Outer Roadway in front of the Woodrow Wilson Service Area:
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–An electrical contractor working on an electrical service ruptured a 2″ gas line to a residence on Isa Court around 12:30 pm, causing a natural gas leak. Robbinsville Police and Robbinsville Fire Department responded and found a large quantity of gas coming from the contractor’s excavation. Homes were evacuated due to several gas readings in several houses on the street. Police and firefighters notified PSE&G of the seriousness of the gas leak and they responded with a large crew to shut the gas off and make repairs. The PSE&G gas crew wore supplied air lines and flame proof suits to enter the hole to shut the gas off. Robbinsville firefighters stood by wearing air packs until the gas was shut down. PSE&G was able to control the gas leak in about 15 minutes after arrival.
Prior to letting residents back into their homes PSE&G will have to check all the homes to make sure that any gas that did get in dissipated. Electric service was also shut down to several homes on the court until repairs were completed.
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.
WEST WINDSOR TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–In a detailed press release West Windsor Police stated a 15 year old resident of West Windsor, 17 year old of West Windsor, 17 year Old of Plainboro, and 18 year old of East Windsor were victims in a drug buy gone bad at The Mews at Princeton Junction parking lot near building 7000 on October 3, 2020. The accused were all from Teaneck, NJ and ages 18, 19 and 20 years old. One accused from Teaneck, NJ was left with life threating injuries and has since recovered. The details of the press release are below:
On Saturday October 3, 2020 at 11:38 pm, Patrol Units were detailed to the parking lot near the 7000 & 9000 Buildings at The Mews at Princeton Junction on a report of an unknown disturbance. No combatants were on scene upon arrival of the Patrol Units, however, there were reports of screaming & fighting, while (2) unknown males loaded up another male into a dark colored vehicle that sped away. Although no combatants were left at the scene, several large puddles of blood were located near a speed bump in the parking lot and a broken Glock G19 BB Gun.
Additional investigation revealed that (3) individuals involved in the incident had responded to the Penn Medicine Princeton Medical Center where they were identified as the (3) Subjects above with the assistance of Plainsboro Township Police Department. Due to a substantial and life threatening (at the time) injury sustained to Subject #1 and with scant details known, the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office Homicide Task Force was requested.
An exhaustive investigation led by Detective C. Van Ness of West Windsor Police Department with members of the WWPD Patrol Division & Detective Bureau, Plainsboro Township Police Department, Robbinsville Township Police Department, and the Mercer County Homicide Task Force revealed the following: Accused #1 and Victim #1 had been negotiating a narcotics transaction for numerous THC Cartridges. These (2) agreed to meet in the parking lot at The Mews that evening. The (3) Accused arrived together with Accused #1 as the narcotics deal negotiator, Accused #2 as his immediate backup, and Accused #3 as the wheelman. Accused #1 entered into a Vehicle, a minivan, operated by Victim #2, and occupied by Victims #1 (seated in the very rear row with the illicit merchandise), #3, & #4. Accused #2 stood nearby the victims’ Vehicle while Accused #3 waited in their parked Vehicle. Negotiations broke down inside the minivan and Accused #1 began punching Victim #1. Accused #2 attempted to enter the Victims’ Vehicle. Accused #2 punched Victim #3 (who was attempting to assist Victim #1) thru a lowered passenger side rear window. Accused #2 tried dragging Victim #2 out of the Vehicle by his arm through an opened rear passenger sliding door. Accused #2 lost his grasp on Victim #3 and went around to the driver’s side in an attempt to physically remove Victim #4 from the Vehicle by dragging him by his legs. Victim #3 helped pull Victim #4 back into the Vehicle. Victim #2 exited the vehicle to confront Accused #2 and was repeatedly pistol whipped in the head with a gun by Accused #2. Victim #2 re-entered the Vehicle and drove it from the scene in an attempt to end the assault while providing safety for the occupants. Accused #1 apparently jumped from the Vehicle in an attempt to exit and sustained a severe head injury.
Initially, Accused #1’s injury was considered life threatening, however, he has survived the injury from this incident. Victim #2 received lacerations from the pistol whipping while injuries to all others were considered minor. It should be noted that the Glock G19 REPLICA BB Gun (Orange Tip Removed) and very closely mimicked a Glock 19 black handgun. The identities of all are being withheld at this time due to injuries sustained and the involvement of Juveniles. Accused #1 was Charged with Robbery while Accused #2 was Charged with Robbery, Possession of a Weapon for Unlawful Purposes & Unlawful Possession of a Weapon and Accused #3 was Charged with Liability for Conduct of Another (Robbery).
The Investigation was very extensive after beginning with very little information and such a major injury sustained. Our Patrol Division and Detective Bureau worked seamlessly together. Chief Garofalo wanted to personally thank the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office, the Homicide Task Force, the Plainsboro Township PD, and the Robbinsville Township PD for their professionalism & essential assistance. We could not have completed this intricate & detailed investigation without the help of those agencies, our “central nervous system”, the Communications Center, and “the backbone of any Police Department”, our Patrol Division.
1) Aggravated Assault
3) Possession of a Weapon for Unlawful Purposes
4) Unlawful Possession of a Weapon
5) Liability for Conduct of Another (Robbery)
DATE OCCURRED: October 3, 2020 at 11:38 pm
LOCATION OCCURRED: The Mews at Princeton Junction parking lot near building 7000
VICTIMS: 1) 18 year old Resident of East Windsor, NJ 08512 2) 17 year old Resident of Plainsboro, NJ 08536 3) 17 year old Resident of West Windsor, NJ 08550 4) 15 year old Resident of West Windsor, NJ 08550
ACCUSED: 1) 18 year old–Crime #2 ONLY Resident of Teaneck, NJ 07666 2) 19 year old–Crimes #2-#4 Resident of Teaneck, NJ 07666 3) 20 year old–Crime #5 ONLY Resident of Teaneck, NJ 07666
OTHERS INVOLVED: 1) WWPD Patrol Division 2) WWPD Detective Bureau 3) Plainsboro Township PD 4) Robbinsville Township PD 5) Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office (MCPO) 6) MCPO Homicide Task Force (HTF)
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–At 2:03 am the Robbinsville Fire Department was dispatched to the 1100 Block of Route 130 for a vehicle fire. Upon arrival they discovered that a generator on a trailer was well involved in fire in a parking area for trucks and heavy equipment. Firefighters were able to quickly knock down the flames before spreading to other trailers and vehicles parked in the area.
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)– For the first time in 800 years, planets Saturn and Jupiter aligned. It may appear as one star observed from Earth with the naked eye, hence the conjunction nicknamed the “Christmas Star.” During the month of December, the two planets appeared to move closer together, and on Monday night, they were closest. Unfortunately, clouds over most of New Jersey kept most from seeking the spectacle. Tonight, there was a short break in the clouds long enough to get a photograph of the conjunction.
If you did not see the two planets, you will still have an opportunity over the next few days to see the rare conjunction, but it will appear that the planets are moving further apart each night.
To see the planets, look in the Southwest sky just after dusk and you will see two bright objects that may appear as one with the naked eye. If you use binoculars or a telescope, you can see the two planets apart. As the week progresses, however, Jupiter and Saturn will move further apart once again. To make things easier, use an application like Star Walk 2 or Google Sky Map to find and identify the planets.
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–At the direction of Mayor Dave Fried, Robbinsville Township added to its robust open space inventory on December 10 when it acquired the .665 acres behind Chase Bank at 2340 Route 33 – also known as Block 3.41, Lot 7.02 on the Robbinsville Tax Map. The purchase in the amount of $750,000, paid for by the Open Space Tax Trust Fund – pushed the total amount of preserved land to over 1,200 acres since Fried became mayor in 2005.”This was the last available parcel on the north side of Town Center, and we wanted an open space where kids could play and not worry about more residential housing going up,” said Mayor Fried, who noted the maximum proposed apartment units for the property was 15 had development occurred. “We were already concerned about parking in that area and did not want to add to those worries. We’re very proud of our open space record.”With this acquisition, Robbinsville has now preserved over 390 acres, including “Washington Woods” and the former Miry Run Golf Club, since 2017.
HAMILTON TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–Hamilton Mayor Jeff Martin and Robbinsville Mayor Dave Fried were at RWJ Hamilton Hospital early this morning to witness the first COVID-19 vaccinations given to healthcare employees.
When employees of the hospital are able to receive the vaccine, they are sent to a registration table and computer to complete forms and other paperwork before vaccination. The vaccine is prepared at another location in the hospital and then relocated to two vaccination stations where it is administered. From there the employees need to wait in a waiting area for at least 15 minutes to make sure there are no adverse reactions. In the waiting area, there is medicine and other things to treat anaphylactic shock. Once the required waiting period is over, the employee can go about their day. At a future date, the employees will receive the second dose of the same vaccine to complete the process.
First to be vaccinated were: Victoria Bradeis, RWJUH Hamilton Respiratory Therapy from Langhorne, PA and Meghan Rolston, RWJUH Hamilton ICU Nurse from Lawerenceville, NJ.
“Based off of my experience, seeing the destruction and devastation of the virus I think people should be afraid of getting COVID not the vaccine,” said Victoria Bradeis, a RWJ Respiratory Therapist.
Meghan Rolston a RWJ Hamilton ICU Nurse said, “I believe in the science behind the vaccine and will be forever grateful for all the companies who made an effort to end this horrendous pandemic. There is now hope in the face of the incessantly traumatic uncertainty that has monopolized our lives for nearly a year. Although we are far from the end, there is a speck of light at the end of this long tunnel and we are able to exhale a little bit for now.”
“This is a monumental day, not just for RWJ-Hamilton and its great team healthcare professionals, but for all of us,” Robbinsville Mayor Dave Fried said. “This is the light guiding us to the tunnel that will hopefully take us out of this pandemic. We still must remain vigilant until everyone has access to these vaccines, but we are so appreciative to all the scientists and researchers across the world that have made this historic vaccination rollout possible.”
Hamilton Township Mayor Jeff Martin said, “Today is the first step in our local fight against the virus. We are forever indebted to RWJ Hamilton and their team of Nurses, Doctors and Staff who have been on the frontline of this fight since the Spring. It is only fitting they get the first doses. We still have a long way to go so be sure to still wear a mask, keep a safe distance and wash your hands regularly”
RWJ University Hospital Hamilton Press Release:
Following weeks of preparation, Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Hamilton, an RWJBarnabas Health facility, began administering the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine to its high-risk, frontline employees today. The hospital opened its employee vaccine clinic at 7 am and employees were welcomed with cheers of support from the administrative team and hospital staff.
“Based off of my experience, seeing the destruction and devastation of the virus, I think people should be afraid of getting COVID, not the vaccine,” says Victoria Bradeis, a respiratory therapist at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Hamilton. Bradeis was one of the first hospital team members to receive the first dose of the vaccine.
RWJBarnabas Health (RWJBH) has been working diligently with the state to support the New Jersey Department of Health’s ambitious vaccination plan to get 70 percent of the state’s adult population vaccinated in six months. As the largest, most comprehensive academic health care system in New Jersey, RWJBarnabas Heath is committed to treating and saving the lives of patients with COVID-19, and also to fighting the spread of the disease, protecting its team members and ending the pandemic. With the opening of its employee vaccine clinic today, Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Hamilton is proud to be an integral part of the national and New Jersey COVID-19 vaccination effort. Public health officials and medical experts believe vaccination is an important step in helping to prevent or lessen the effect of COVID-19 and its potentially devastating consequences.
Receiving the vaccine is important to many of the hospital’s staff. “Our team has worked so hard through this pandemic and they continue to provide the best care to all of our patients. This vaccine brings them a new measure of protection for themselves, their loved ones and our patients,” says Richard Freeman, President and Chief Executive Officer, Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Hamilton.
In support of the hospital staff, Robbinsville Township Mayor Dave Fried said, “This is a monumental day, not just for RWJUH Hamilton and its great team healthcare professionals, but for all of us. This is the light guiding us to the tunnel that will hopefully take us out of this pandemic. We still must remain vigilant until everyone has access to these vaccines, but we are so appreciative to all the scientists and researchers across the world that have made this historic vaccination rollout possible.”
The Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine received emergency use authorization by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on December 11, 2020. Vaccine safety and efficacy for Pfizer’s vaccine has been issued Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) by the FDA. FDA authorization of a vaccine means the agency has determined, based on substantial evidence and a stringent review process, that the vaccine is safe and effective for its intended use. The vaccine has been shown to be 95 percent effective and requires two doses received 21 days apart. The vaccine is voluntary for employees and medical staff and is being offered free of charge.
Due to limited supply, the vaccine is being given in phases based on prioritization order. The prioritization order for RWJBarnabas Health staff is determined by the risk of contracting COVID-19 from exposures while at work, primarily by job setting. RWJBarnabas Health facilities expect to vaccinate staff over a 6-week period (weeks 1-3 first dose; weeks 4-6 second dose).
About Robert Wood Johnson Hospital Hamilton
Located in Hamilton Township, New Jersey, Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Hamilton, an RWJBarnabas Health facility, serves communities within a five-county area and includes an acute care hospital, cancer center, affiliated medical group, Lakeview Child Centers and the RWJ Fitness & Wellness Center. RWJBarnabas Health and Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital Hamilton, in partnership with Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey – the state’s only NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center – brings a world class team of researchers and specialists to fight alongside you, providing close-to-home access to the latest treatment and clinical trials. For more information, visit us at www.RWJBH.org/Hamilton.
December 20, 2020 updated December 21 with statement from Amazon, updated again with daylight photos and statement from Robbinsville Mayor Dave Fried
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–Sources told MidJersey.News that Amazon Warehouse, PNE5 that is a Sort Center at 18 Applegate Drive was closed for an increase of asymptomatic COVID-19 cases. Passing by the warehouse this evening (12/20) it appears that security has been posted at both entrances and the warehouse has a minimal crew on location compared to normal. The warehouse will be closed out an abundance of cation until December 26 sources said.
In an e-mail received this morning Lisa Levandowski, Amazon spokesperson told MidJersey.news: “Through our in-house COVID-19 testing program, we detected an increase in the number of asymptomatic positive cases at our PNE5 facility in northern New Jersey and have proactively closed the site until December 26th out of an abundance of caution. This is exactly why we built the program—to identify asymptomatic cases and ensure that we can take swift action to prevent spread. All employees will be paid for the shifts that they’ll miss.”
“The pandemic will continue making the rules until the vaccines are available to everyone. We rely not only on our front line workers, but also those at Amazon and other distribution centers who have been packing, sorting and safely delivering us the goods we use every day. The supply chain is incredibly important, and we will continue working with all of our partners in the private sector to keep people as safe as possible. We wish all of those workers impacted a very speedy recovery.” –Statement from Robbinsville Mayor Dave Fried
Sort Centers take individual packages from fulfillment centers and route them to individual post offices to speed up the process of delivery. Sort Centers reportedly make Sunday delivery possible by USPS and speed shipments during the rest of the week.
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–MidJersey.News caught a green character aka the Grinch today following and helping Santa in Robbinsville. The Grinch unlike his former self was in the holiday spirit, waving to residents and having a good time helping Santa. Robbinsville Township PBA #344 issued a press release on what happened.
PRESS RELEASE: The dastardly Grinch was captured late last night while attempting to steal more holiday decorations! After a long night of reflection and a lecture from Chief Nitti, he made an agreement. He will now help Santa bring holiday cheer to Robbinsville! He started this afternoon, driving through town with Santa and Robbinsville Township Fire Department. Thank you Grinch for having a change of heart!
ROBBINSVILLE TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–Santa arrived in Robbinsville today in preparation for his return trip on Christmas Eve. Santa was led by the Robbinsville Township Fire Department around town on fire apparatus both on the east and west sides of town.
Also spotted in the Robbinsville Township Police Department’s Emergency Services Unit was the Grinch and he appeared to finally be in custody and in the holiday spirit. The police department has put out several all points bulletins about a suspicious green character tampering with Christmas lights at the municipal building and firehouse.
Santa Claus is on his trip through Robbinsville. Follow along the two routes below.
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–With numerous complaints about Optimum Internet service Robbinsville Township is seeking to possibly contract with another alternative provider for Internet service. Robbinsville is asking residents to take an survey to see if there would be interest in the alternative provider.
As a resident of Robbinsville, if the Township had the ability to contract with a reputable outside vendor to deliver secure, 150Mbps internet service, which included in-home WiFi, to sections of town currently impacted by inadequate internet would you sign up for such a service? The cost would be approximately $50 per-month, per-home all-in with no extra taxes or modem/router rental fees. (Note: The provider would only supply internet service, not cable TV).
Would you switch from your current internet service provider to a new provider that delivered a secure, 150Mbps internet service, which included in-home WiFi, for approximately $50 per-month if you had that option?
From Mayor Dave Fried:
Tonight, I briefed Township Council about the possibility of bringing in another internet service provider to compete with Optimum/Altice since that is where the vast majority of complaints to my office originate. We’ve heard you loud and clear … and we want to help! This would be a private public partnership and it is outside the box thinking, so we want to move carefully. I don’t take this move lightly. but I feel we have exhausted all of our options. Assuming we get favorable feedback we will be rolling out more information about the company and what they can provide and when they can provide it. This company has an outstanding reputation for providing secure, 150Mbps in-home internet via Wi-Fi and outstanding customer service to its customers. It would cost approximately $50 per month, per household and it would be for internet only (no cable TV, but you would be able to stream on your Smart TV). We have been assured there are no hidden fees or taxes, and you would not have to pay extra to rent your modem/router. We will be putting out a survey sometime tomorrow gauging your interest in this idea in a Newsfeed poll, the Township Facebook page and on the website at www.robbinsville.net. We would very much appreciate your feedback!
A Nor’easter storm is pounding the area with snow, sleet, hail and mixed with rain at times. Numerous accidents and cars off roadways have been reported in the area in the slippery conditions. Police departments are asking residents not to travel if possible due to the conditions.
Robbinsville Township: There will be a delayed opening of Township Offices until 10:30 am. Robbinsville garbage collection that was normally scheduled for Thursday December 17 will now be picked up on Saturday December 19.
Princeton 6.4 in 0900 PM 12/16 Public
Pennington 5.5 in 0900 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
1 WSW Ewing 5.0 in 0744 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
Ewing 4.2 in 0655 PM 12/16 Public
Hamilton Twp 3.0 in 0600 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
West Windsor Twp. 2.5 in 0630 PM 12/16 Public
2 ENE Hamilton Twp 2.0 in 0630 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
1 SW Robbinsville Twp. 2.0 in 0600 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
Edison 5.5 in 0740 PM 12/16 Public
North Brunswick 5.0 in 0830 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
Old Bridge 5.0 in 0815 PM 12/16 Public
Metuchen 4.6 in 0840 PM 12/16 Public
Parlin 4.5 in 0800 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
1 SSW Plainsboro Township 4.2 in 0659 PM 12/16 NWS Employee
Perth Amboy 4.0 in 0800 PM 12/16 Public
South Brunswick 4.0 in 0720 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
East Brunswick 2.5 in 0600 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
South Plainfield 2.5 in 0600 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
1 NNE New Brunswick 1.6 in 0600 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
Woodbridge 1.5 in 0600 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
Carteret 1.3 in 0600 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
Holmdel 7.0 in 0900 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
Howell 6.1 in 0830 PM 12/16 Public
1 S Howell 6.0 in 0605 PM 12/16 Public
Manalapan Twp 5.8 in 0838 PM 12/16 Public
Rumson 5.5 in 0830 PM 12/16 Public
1 N Eatontown 4.5 in 0910 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
Freehold Twp 4.5 in 0715 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
Freehold 4.0 in 0615 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
Middletown 4.0 in 0824 PM 12/16 Public
Tinton Falls 3.5 in 0847 PM 12/16 Public
Leonardo 2.1 in 0920 PM 12/16 Public
Cliffwood Beach 1.8 in 0600 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
Wall Twp 1.8 in 0529 PM 12/16 Broadcast Media
Atlantic Highlands 1.2 in 0548 PM 12/16 Public
Oakhurst 0.8 in 0650 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
Jackson 7.0 in 0900 PM 12/16 Public
Manchester Twp 4.1 in 0705 PM 12/16 Public
Lakewood 4.0 in 0610 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
1 NE Toms River 3.0 in 0830 PM 12/16 Public
Whiting 0.7 in 0715 PM 12/16 Public
Brick 0.5 in 0600 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
Chesterfield 6.5 in 0800 PM 12/16 Public
Evesham Twp 6.0 in 0600 PM 12/16 Public
Riverton 6.0 in 0630 PM 12/16 Public
Bordentown Twp 5.7 in 0730 PM 12/16 Public
Browns Mills 5.5 in 0544 PM 12/16 Public
Mount Laurel 5.1 in 0530 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
Medford 5.0 in 0730 PM 12/16 Public
Moorestown 5.0 in 0820 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
1 WNW Burlington 4.9 in 0600 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
2 E Columbus 4.8 in 0600 PM 12/16 Public
Lumberton 4.7 in 0718 PM 12/16 Public
Burlington Twp 4.5 in 0650 PM 12/16 Public
1 NE Burlington Twp 4.5 in 0645 PM 12/16 NWS Employee
Hainesport 4.5 in 0700 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
Bordentown 4.4 in 0730 PM 12/16 Public
1 ENE Westampton Twp 4.1 in 0530 PM 12/16 Official NWS Obs
Burlington 4.0 in 0500 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
Delanco 4.0 in 0550 PM 12/16 Public
Marlton 4.0 in 0500 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
2 SW Medford 4.0 in 0445 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
Southampton Twp 4.0 in 0627 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
Roebling 3.5 in 0530 PM 12/16 Public
2 E Delran 3.0 in 0600 PM 12/16 Public
1 SE Fort Dix 3.0 in 0529 PM 12/16 Public
Shamong 3.0 in 0444 PM 12/16 Public
Florence 2.9 in 0645 PM 12/16 Trained Spotter
Delran 2.8 in 0447 PM 12/16 Public
Pemberton 0.5 in 0215 PM 12/16 Public
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–Around 8:18 pm the Robbinsville Township Fire Department, Hightstown First Aid and Mercer County Paramedics responded to the NJ Turnpike for a pedestrian struck. Radio reports indicate that the man suffered a broken leg after by being hit by a box truck and was found by a passerby at mile marker 63.5 north bound outer lanes of the highway. The man was placed in the back of the good Samaritan’s vehicle until help could arrive. It is still unclear why the man was found on the side of the highway in blizzard like conditions.
The man was transported to the Trauma Center at Capital Health Regional Medical Center in Trenton and a “trauma alert” was called in route to the hospital. The man was expected to survive his injuries.
From observations on scene no truck was seen stopped near the scene.
NJ State Police reports that they are still investigating the incident.
Breaking news report based on preliminary information from on scene reporting, once official information becomes available the story will be updated and any corrections made if needed.
UPDATE: Roadway reopened at 11:10 pm
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–The Robbinsville Township Police Department and the Robbinsville Township Fire Department responded to a serious crash in the 1200 Block of Route 130 North Bound near Gordon Road at 9:29 pm. When Police and firefighters arrived they found a van that appeared to have struck a tractor trailer on the side of the road in the shoulder and was hit by another tractor trailer also traveling north on the highway. The van was peeled open on the passenger side and the driver was trapped behind the drivers door. Robbinsville firefighters were able to pry open the door and remove the driver of the van. The driver of the van was transported to the Trauma Center at Capital Health Regional Medical Center in Trenton. The driver of the tractor-trailer traveling in the north bound direction was transported to RWJ at Hamilton Hospital. Both drivers appeared to have non-life-threating injuries and are expected to survive the crash.
Robbinsville Police shut down the roadway at Woodside Road and traffic was detoured in the area for clean up and investigation. As of 10:54 pm the roadway was still closed as heavy duty tow trucks work to remove the tractor-trailer. UPDATE: Roadway reopened at 11:10 pm
Breaking news report based on preliminary information from on scene reporting, once official information becomes available the story will be updated and any corrections made if needed.
Route 130 in the area of Gordon road is closed due to an accident investigation. Please avoid the area and follow detours
Route 130 in the area of Gordon road is closed due to an accident investigation. Please avoid the area and follow detours
Route 130 in the area of Gordon road is closed due to an accident investigation. Please avoid the area and follow detours
EL DORADO, Ark. and WHITEHOUSE STATION, N.J., Dec. 14, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Murphy USA announced an agreement to acquire QuickChek Corporation (“QuickChek”) in an all-cash transaction for $645 million. The purchase price includes expected tax benefits valued at $20 million for a net after-tax purchase price of $625 million. The transaction will be financed with a combination of cash on hand, existing credit facilities and new debt, and Murphy USA has obtained committed financing from the Royal Bank of Canada.
QuickChek represents a truly distinctive business in a class shared by only a few comparable industry peers. Founded in 1967 as an extension of Durling Farms, a door-to-door milk and fresh dairy products delivery service that originally opened in 1888, it is a family-owned chain of 157 stores located in central and northern New Jersey and the New York metro area. It operates a best-in-class food and beverage (“F&B”) model with a strong regional brand and engaged customer following, offering quick-serve restaurant style food alongside convenience items; a high-volume fuel offer is included at 89 of its newest stores. Its industry leading economics are evidenced by robust per-store per-year merchandise sales of $3.5 million, combined merchandise margins of 38% with F&B representing over 50% of the mix, and per-store per-year fuel gallons of 3.8 million. Additionally, QuickChek has a proven history of same-store-sales growth and a rich real estate pipeline to sustain unit growth within its existing footprint.
The acquisition is consistent with Murphy USA’s updated capital allocation strategy as announced in October. It represents a continued commitment to deliver exceptional and sustained value to long-term shareholders and will complement other ongoing value creation mechanisms, including ongoing productivity improvement initiatives, organic growth, share repurchase and a dividend.
“In October we outlined an updated capital allocation strategy and committed to improving our food and beverage offer at existing and future sites,” said Murphy USA President and CEO Andrew Clyde. “This transaction greatly accelerates those efforts and benefits, and is expected to provide reverse synergies across our network, while enhancing future returns on new stores. The transaction is also expected to create direct synergies that leverage our enterprise scale and our distinctive capabilities in fuel, tobacco and loyalty. We are excited to join forces with an exceptional and highly engaged team at QuickChek who share Murphy USA’s passion for delivering excellence every day to all our stakeholders.”
“QuickChek and Murphy USA both reflect a family heritage and a strong people culture,” said QuickChek CEO and Chairman Dean Durling. “I am thrilled by Murphy USA’s commitment to honor our legacy and preserve our brand while learning from our business model. I am proud of what we have accomplished in making QuickChek what it is today and I am excited about the opportunities for continued growth and success in the next chapter in QuickChek’s journey. I know QuickChek’s dedicated employees and valued customers remain in good hands.”
The above considerations result in highly attractive deal economics. The net investment of $625 million represents a multiple of 13.2 times QuickChek’s estimated LTM October 2020 Adjusted EBITDA of $47 million. Annual run rate synergies of $28 million are expected to be achieved by the third year. When taking into account expected run-rate synergies and tax benefits, the acquisition reflects a multiple of 8.3 times estimated LTM Adjusted EBITDA. The acquisition is projected to be accretive to earnings in 2022, the first full year of combined operations.
The transaction is expected to close during the first quarter of 2021, subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approval. RBC Capital Markets, LLC acted as exclusive financial advisor and Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP acted as legal advisor to Murphy USA. BofA Securities, Inc. acted as exclusive financial advisor and Weil, Gotshal & Manges LLP acted as legal advisor to QuickChek.
Webcast Information Murphy USA will host a conference call to discuss the transaction at 8:00 a.m. CT on Monday, December 14, 2020. Interested parties may participate by dialing 1-833-968-2218 and referencing conference ID number 8192285. The call can also be accessed via webcast through the Investor Relations section of Murphy USA’s website at http://ir.corporate.murphyusa.com. The webcast will be available for replay one hour after the conference concludes and a transcript will be made available shortly thereafter.
About Murphy USA Murphy USA (NYSE:MUSA) is a leading retailer of gasoline and convenience merchandise with nearly 1,500 sites located primarily in the Southwest, Southeast and Midwest United States. The company and its team of nearly 10,000 employees serve an estimated 1.7 million customers each day through its network of retail gasoline stations in 25 states. The majority of Murphy USA’s sites are located in close proximity to Walmart stores. The company also markets gasoline and other products at standalone stores under the Murphy Express brand. Murphy USA ranks 262 among Fortune 500 companies.
About QuickChek Continuing to redefine “fresh convenience,” QuickChek is a market leader in food service providing local one-stop shopping where consumers can enjoy delicious made-to-order subs and sandwiches, guaranteed fresh brewed coffee, healthy snacks and salads, hot breakfast and more. Looking to make a difference in people’s everyday lives, QuickChek enables consumers to choose their convenience: you can place a mobile order through the QuickChek Rewards app where you’ll earn rewards for future savings; have your order ready through Curbside Pickup; utilize in-store self-checkout counters to get you on your way safe and fast; or have your order delivered through DoorDash and Grub Hub. Based in Whitehouse Station, NJ, the family-owned company operates 157 fresh convenience market stores including 89 locations with fuel throughout New Jersey, New York’s Hudson Valley and Long Island.
Certain statements in this news release contain or may suggest “forward-looking” information (as defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995) that involve risk and uncertainties, including, but not limited to anticipated store openings, fuel margins, merchandise margins, sales of RINs and trends in our operations. Such statements are based upon the current beliefs and expectations of the company’s management and are subject to significant risks and uncertainties. Actual future results may differ materially from historical results or current expectations depending upon factors including, but not limited to: our ability to consummate our acquisition of QuickChek on the stated terms or at all; our ability to realize projected synergies from the acquisition of QuickChek and successfully expand our food and beverage offerings; our ability to finance the acquisition of QuickChek on acceptable terms; our ability to continue to maintain a good business relationship with Walmart; successful execution of our growth strategy, including our ability to realize the anticipated benefits from such growth initiatives, and the timely completion of construction associated with our newly planned stores which may be impacted by the financial health of third parties; our ability to effectively manage our inventory, disruptions in our supply chain and our ability to control costs; the impact of severe weather events, such as hurricanes, floods and earthquakes; the impact of a global health pandemic, such as COVID-19 including the impact on our fuel volumes if the gradual recoveries experienced in Q2 2020 stall or reverse as a result of any resurgence in COVID-19 infection rates and government reaction in response thereof; the impact of any systems failures, cybersecurity and/or security breaches, including any security breach that results in theft, transfer or unauthorized disclosure of customer, employee or company information or our compliance with information security and privacy laws and regulations in the event of such an incident; successful execution of our information technology strategy; future tobacco or e-cigarette legislation and any other efforts that make purchasing tobacco products more costly or difficult could hurt our revenues and impact gross margins; changes to the company’s capital allocation, including the timing, declaration, amount and payment of any future dividends or levels of the company’s share repurchases, or management of operating cash; the market price of the Company’s stock prevailing from time to time, the nature of other investment opportunities presented to the Company from time to time, the Company’s cash flows from operations, and general economic conditions; compliance with debt covenants; availability and cost of credit; and changes in interest rates. Our SEC reports, including our most recent annual Report on Form 10-K and quarterly report on Form 10-Q, contain other information on these and other factors that could affect our financial results and cause actual results to differ materially from any forward-looking information we may provide. The company undertakes no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements to reflect subsequent events, new information or future circumstances.
Supplemental Disclosure Regarding Non-GAAP Financial Information
The reconciliation of estimated LTM October 2020 Adjusted EBITDA to estimated GAAP net income for QuickChek is as follows:
(Millions of dollars)
LTM Oct 2020
Estimated net income
Income tax expense
Depreciation and amortization
Estimated Adjusted EBITDA
Consistent with Murphy USA’s historical presentation of non-GAAP metrics, Adjusted EBITDA for QuickChek is provided as it is a key metric used in the Company’s operational and financial decision-making. The Company believes that some investors may find it a useful indicator of ongoing operating performance and ability to generate cash flows from operations. Non-GAAP measures are not a substitute for GAAP disclosures and Adjusted EBITDA may be prepared differently by us than by other companies using similarly titled non-GAAP metrics. The above amounts are estimated based on preliminary data for QuickChek’s fiscal year ended October 30, 2020 and are subject to change based on the finalization of the financial statements for such fiscal year.
UPPER FREEHOLD TOWNSHIP, NJ (MONMOUTH)–Around 6:30 am a vehicle traveling in the 1300 Block of Old York Road lost control hit a pole and ended up coming to rest in a sod farm field. The impact of the crash cut a utility pole in half and left wires across the roadway closing the road.
The driver of the vehicle was temporarily trapped but was able to self-extricate himself out of the vehicle though the passenger’s side of vehicle. Members of Hope Fire Company are on scene providing traffic control and working on containing a small gasoline leak from the vehicle. Capital Health EMS responded to the scene and the driver did not want transport to the hospital.
At the time of this report Old York Road is closed between Herbert Road and Hluchy Roads. NJ State Police are investigating the crash. Robbinsville Township Police were also assisting with traffic control at Herbert Road and Old York. Monmouth County Highway Department was responding with barricades to close the roadway for the utility pole replacement. Monmouth County Hazardous Materials Team was notified and sending a representative to the scene for the gasoline leak.
ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–On Tuesday, Robbinsville Township Councilman Dan Schuberth announced via Facebook that he will be resigning his seat and relocate to Washington, D.C. to accept a new position with as the Chief Business Development Officer for the National Association of Wholesaler Distributors.
Mr. Schuberth was elected to his first term on Council in November, 2015, served as President in 2017 and was re-elected to his second, four-year term on November 5, 2019. His current term was due to expire on December 31, 2023. The four remaining members of Council will vote to fill the unexpired term. The candidate must be a resident of Robbinsville and be a registered voter here for at least one year. In the event of a 2-2 tie, Mayor Dave Fried would break the deadlock.
Mr. Schuberth served as Chairman of the Economic Development Advisory Committee (EDAC) from 2012 to 2015 and is currently the Council representative on EDAC. He also served as Mayor Fried’s representative on the Township Planning Board in 2015 and as the Council representative in 2016.
An advocate for those who suffer from from Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and mental illness, Mr. Schuberth volunteers as a Director on the Board of the Mercer County Chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI Mercer).
Mr. Schuberth has lived in the Town Center section of Robbinsville with his wife, Dr. Natalie Schuberth, since 2010. He is a graduate of Bowdoin College (B.A.) and the University of Pennsylvania (M.S.). He returned to UPenn in the Fall of 2016 to attain a Master’s Degree in Public Administration (M.P.A.) while working full time as Regional Operations Manager for McMaster-Carr, a Robbinsville-based industrial supply company.
“Leaving Robbinsville is one of the most difficult decisions I’ve made in my life,” he said. “When we moved here 10 years ago, Natalie and I decided to go “all in”. We got to know our neighbors, became part of a faith community with Lifetree Community Church, and volunteered our time in the service of others. We’ve met amazing people, supported important causes, and tried to spread joy in a community that welcomed us in with open arms. We are so grateful to everyone that made Robbinsville a place we proudly called our home. Serving on the Township Council for the past five years has been one of the greatest experiences of my life. Mayor Fried and my colleagues on the Township Council are world class public servants and I will miss working with them a great deal. The residents of our community are some of the most caring, engaged, and compassionate people on the planet, and I want to thank each and every person I’ve had the opportunity to work with on issues large and small. You will always have a friend in Washington.”