Continuing Coverage: NWS Investigating Damage From Yesterday’s Storms

July 30, 2021

Confirmed EF1 Tornado in Windsor section of Robbinsville Township, NJ UPDATE: National Weather Service Confirms EF1 Tornado Hits Windsor Section Of Robbinsville, NJ

ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–A possible tornado touched down near Gordon Road and Route 130, the Robbinsville Township Police and Robbinsville Township Fire Department responded for wires down, then a structural collapse in the 1200 Block of Route 130 at 7:27 p.m. Shortly after trees and wires were reported down at the intersection of Voelbel Road and Perrinveville Road, power was out in the are and was still being restored this morning.

There was damage to a day care center on Route 130 from the storm and a specific path goes though the woods from Route 130 towards Windsor Road and Windsor-Perrineville Road. The next damage in a specific path is located at Windsor-Perrineveille Road and Voelbel. Trees are down and appeared to be twisted where they were broken off.

The day care center was occupied by the owner at the time of the storm and there were no injuries reported. A roofing contractor was on scene this morning getting an estimate to make the roof repairs. It appears that just roofing material was removed and some minor siding damage near the entrance; the daycare center should be reopen very quickly.

MidJersey.news was in the area last night and witnessed rotation right after the storm left Robbinsville and progressed into East Windsor. Rotation was seen behind the “Field of Terror” off Perrineville Road and the rotating clouds were last seen heading into Millstone towards Clarksburg/Perrineville and Roosevelt.

The path of damage is very specific and not wide usually as seen as straight line winds. If the National Weather Service confirms a tornado the story will be updated to reflect that.


Severe Flooding From Thunderstorms And Possible Tornados Hit Area

Possible Tornado On Long Beach Island Several Houses Damaged Possible Capsized Boats In The Bay






Early Morning Murder In Trenton

August 1, 2021 Update Here: Update: Man Arrested In Death Of Transgender Person

July 30, 2021

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–The Mercer County Homicide Task Force is investigating a shooting homicide that occurred Friday morning in Trenton. Police responded to a residence in the first block of Kelsey Avenue around 4:30 a.m. An individual was located shot and unresponsive behind the front door. The victim has been identified as Shaquil Loftin, 23, of Trenton.  No arrests have been made and the investigation is ongoing. Anyone with information is asked to contact Detective Dave Petelle at 609-989-6406. Tips can also be emailed to mchtftips@mercercounty.org.



Names of 2021* homicide victims: 

  1. 2/18/2021 Jabree Saunders, 26, from shooting on May 14, 2018
  2. 2/22/2021 Khalil Gibbs, 25, of West Windsor, shooting
  3. 2/25/2021 Lovelle Laramore, 60, of Trenton shooting
  4. 4/15/2021 Kaheem Carter, 22, of Trenton, shooting
  5. 4/20/2021 Shaquan McNeil, 25, of Trenton, shooting
  6. 4/24/2021 Cheryl Jones, 65, of Trenton, shooting
  7. 4/29/2021 Ramire Harvey, 25, of Trenton, shooting
  8. 5/15/2021 David Williams 36, of Trenton, shooting
  9. 5/29/2021 Edgar Geovani Sis-Luis, 34, of Trenton, aggravated manslaughter
  10. 7/05/2021 Dion Ellis, 16, Trenton, Shooting
  11. 7/14/2021 Pablo Herrera Chun, 53, Trenton, Shooting
  12. 7/19/2021 William Mitchell, 33, Trenton, Shooting
  13. 7/19/2021 Jermel Carter, 38, Trenton, Shooting
  14. 7/29/2021 Leonard Pettigrew, 58, Trenton, Shooting
  15. 7/30/2021 Shaquil Loftin, 23, Shooting, Trenton

*Updated to reflect the person who died in 2021 from complications from a shooting on May 14, 2018 as per medical examiner report.


Man Identified In Yesterday’s Shooting In Trenton; Family Member Charged With Murder

July 30, 2021

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–The victim in yesterday’s fatal shooting in the 1400 Block of Stuyvesant Avenue has been identified as Leonard Pettigrew, 58.  He was discovered shot in the chest when police responded to a 911 call around 1:15 p.m.  A family member, Emmanuel Shabazz-Gerald, 26, of Ewing, was taken into at the scene. He is charged with murder and weapons offenses.  The preliminary investigation suggests that the homicide is the result of a domestic dispute.


Related Midjersey.News story here: DEVELOPING: Domestic Dispute In Trenton Leads To Murder



Names of 2021* homicide victims: 

  1. 2/18/2021 Jabree Saunders, 26, from shooting on May 14, 2018
  2. 2/22/2021 Khalil Gibbs, 25, of West Windsor, shooting
  3. 2/25/2021 Lovelle Laramore, 60, of Trenton shooting
  4. 4/15/2021 Kaheem Carter, 22, of Trenton, shooting
  5. 4/20/2021 Shaquan McNeil, 25, of Trenton, shooting
  6. 4/24/2021 Cheryl Jones, 65, of Trenton, shooting
  7. 4/29/2021 Ramire Harvey, 25, of Trenton, shooting
  8. 5/15/2021 David Williams 36, of Trenton, shooting
  9. 5/29/2021 Edgar Geovani Sis-Luis, 34, of Trenton, aggravated manslaughter
  10. 7/05/2021 Dion Ellis, 16, Trenton, Shooting
  11. 7/14/2021 Pablo Herrera Chun, 53, Trenton, Shooting
  12. 7/19/2021 William Mitchell, 33, Trenton, Shooting
  13. 7/19/2021 Jermel Carter, 38, Trenton, Shooting
  14. 7/29/2021 Leonard Pettigrew, 58, Trenton, Shooting
  15. 7/30/2021 Shaquil Loftin, 23, Shooting, Trenton

*Updated to reflect the person who died in 2021 from complications from a shooting on May 14, 2018 as per medical examiner report.


No Injuries Reported In Robbinsville Accidents

July 30, 2021

ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–Early this morning a multi-vehicle accident was reported in front of 2350 Route 33. Robbinsville Township Police, Robbinsville Fire Department and EMS responded to the scene. There were no injuries reported in the 12:39 a.m. crash. The Robbinsville Township Police Department is investigating.


Yesterday July 29, 2021 around 10:04 a.m. an accident was reported on Route 130 and Main Street in front of Taco Bell. A vehicle hit a guide wire to a pole and damaged the vehicle. Robbinsville Township Police, Robbinsville Township Fire Department and EMS responded to the scene of the crash. No serious injuries were reported. EMS evaluated a occupant but it was unclear if anyone was transported to the hospital. Robbinsville Township Police is investigating the crash.

Possible Tornado On Long Beach Island 35 Houses Damaged, Boats Damaged In The Bay

July 30, 2021 update here:

On July 29, at 9:22 pm the Long Beach Township Police Department received three 9-1-1 emergency calls for medical assistance in the High Bar Harbor section of Long Beach Township. Officers responding advised that there were four utility poles damaged and multiple houses roofs blown off in the area. It was suspected at the time that a tornado had caused the damages on Antioch Rd., Arnold Blvd, Collier Avenue and Sunset Blvd. Three residents in the area were treated on scene for lacerations. Several residents were evacuated and taken to the Barnegat Light Firehouse for shelter. Thirty-five plus houses in addition to multiple boats were damaged from the suspected tornado. Harvey Cedars, Ship Bottom and Surf City Police Departments all responded to assist as well as the Ocean County Sheriff’s Department and New Jersey State Marine Police. There was also assistance provided from Stafford Township Fire and First Aid Squads in addition to each Fire and First Aid Squad on Long Beach Island. Berkeley Hazmat, the Long Beach Township Transportation Department shuttle buses and Long Beach Township Department of Public Works also assisted. NJ Natural Gas, Verizon, Atlantic City Electric and Comcast all responded and at least five utility poles were replaced. As of 6:00 am July 30th power had been restored to High Bar Harbor with the exception of approximately fifteen houses that sustained extensive damage. As of 7:30 am the National Weather Service had not made an official determination on the category of the weather system.


July 30, 2021

LONG BEACH TOWNSHIP-BARNEGAT LIGHT, NJ (OCEAN)–Last night July 29, 2021, around 9:00 p.m. severe thunderstorms moved though the area along with reported tornados. There were several reports of storm damage possibly from a tornado that hit the area of Long Beach Township and Barnegat Light sections of Long Beach Island as severe thunderstorms moved though the region. There were reports of damage to 8 houses in the High Bar Harbor Section near Arnold Lane and other areas. There were reports of two capsized boats in the Barnegat Bay. This is from preliminary information and once we get official information the story will be updated.


Photos by: Ryan Mack Jersey Shore Fire Response – MidJersey.News Jersey Shore Bureau



DEVELOPING: Domestic Dispute In Trenton Leads To Murder

July 29, 2021

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–The Mercer County Prosecutors Office reports that the Mercer County Homicide Task Force is at the scene of a fatal shooting in the 1400 block of Stuyvesant Avenue. Police responded to a 911 call at approximately 1:15 pm and discovered an adult male shot. He was transported to the hospital and pronounced dead a short time later. Police have a suspect in custody and preliminary investigation suggests the homicide is the result of a domestic dispute.

This is a developing story, check back later for updates.



Names of 2021* homicide victims: 

  1. 2/18/2021 Jabree Saunders, 26, from shooting on May 14, 2018
  2. 2/22/2021 Khalil Gibbs, 25, of West Windsor, shooting
  3. 2/25/2021 Lovelle Laramore, 60, of Trenton shooting
  4. 4/15/2021 Kaheem Carter, 22, of Trenton, shooting
  5. 4/20/2021 Shaquan McNeil, 25, of Trenton, shooting
  6. 4/24/2021 Cheryl Jones, 65, of Trenton, shooting
  7. 4/29/2021 Ramire Harvey, 25, of Trenton, shooting
  8. 5/15/2021 David Williams 36, of Trenton, shooting
  9. 5/29/2021 Edgar Geovani Sis-Luis, 34, of Trenton, aggravated manslaughter
  10. 7/05/2021 Dion Ellis, 16, Trenton, Shooting
  11. 7/14/2021 Pablo Herrera Chun, 53, Trenton, Shooting
  12. 7/19/2021 William Mitchell, 33, Trenton, Shooting
  13. 7/19/2021 Jermel Carter, 38, Trenton, Shooting
  14. 7/29/2021 Leonard Pettigrew, 58, Trenton, Shooting
  15. 7/30/2021 Shaquil Loftin, 23, Shooting, Trenton

*Updated to reflect the person who died in 2021 from complications from a shooting on May 14, 2018 as per medical examiner report.


Severe Flooding From Thunderstorms And Possible Tornados Hit Area

July 29, 2021

EAST WINDSOR, NJ (MERCER)–MidJersey.News was able to capture possible tornadic activity in the area of Old York Road and the NJ Turnpike. The clouds with rotation indicating a possible tornado was spotted behind the Field Of Terror off of Windsor Prineville Road as it moved toward Millstone Township. Further down the road the tornadic activity crossed Winsor Prineville Road towards Roosevelt and Clarksburg.

Just prior to the possible tornado spotting there were reports of damage to a building on Route 130 in Robbinsville and wires down near Gordon Road, Perrineville Road and Allen’s Road.

Several people were stuck in vehicles around the area including Mercer Street Hightstown, Main Street Hightstown, One Mile Road East Windsor, Route 571 East and West Windsor.

MidJersey.News will be out in the morning to check for damage in the areas where the possible tornado was spotted. This is the same area where the NWS reported the rotation.











Teen Struck On Bicycle In Trenton

July 29, 2021

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Around 12:30 p.m. a teen was struck on Adeline Street. Trenton Police, Trenton Fire Department, TEMS and Paramedics responded to the scene. It appeared that the bicyclist was taken to Capital Health Regional Medical Center.

No other information is available about the accident at this time. If updated information is received the story will be updated.


Trenton NJ Man Admits To Interfere With Law Enforcement During Civil Disorder

July 29, 2021

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–A Mercer County, New Jersey, man today admitted attempting to interfere with law enforcement officers during a civil disorder when he attempted to set fire to a police vehicle during a riot in the City of Trenton, Acting U.S. Attorney Rachael A. Honig announced.

Earlja J. Dudley, 28, of Trenton, New Jersey, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Brian R. Martinotti to an information charging him with one count of attempting to obstruct, impede, or interfere with law enforcement officers during a civil disorder affecting commerce.

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

On May 31, 2020, large-scale protests were held throughout the United States, including in Trenton, in response to the death of George Floyd. Although the May 31st protest in Trenton was peaceful earlier in the day, violence erupted later. A group of individuals proceeded down East State Street in downtown Trenton and began to riot, smashing store fronts, looting stores, and attacking multiple marked Trenton Police Department vehicles parked on the 100 Block of East State Street.

A City of Trenton street camera and other video footage taken by an individual present on the street captured Earlja Dudley and an unidentified male open the hood of a police vehicle. Dudley was then joined by another unidentified male who ignited an object that Dudley was holding. Dudley then placed the flaming object into the engine well of the police vehicle attempting to set the police vehicle on fire. Law enforcement later identified Dockery through analysis of street camera and other video footage and he was arrested on Aug. 5, 2020.

Dudley pleaded guilty to one count of attempting to obstruct, impede, or interfere with law enforcement officers during a civil disorder affecting commerce, on May 19, 2021.

The charge of attempting to interfere with law enforcement officers during a civil disorder to which Dudley has now pleaded guilty pleaded guilty carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a maximum fine of $250,000.

Dudley is the fourth of four individuals charged in connection with the May 31, 2020 protest in Trenton, New Jersey to have entered a guilty plea. Defendant Killian F Melecio was sentenced in June of 2021 to a term of 28 months imprisonment and three years supervised release, by U.S. District Judge Brian R. Martinotti. Defendants Kadeem A. Dockery and Justin D. Spry and are scheduled to be sentenced in September and October, 2021.

Acting U.S. Attorney Honig credited special agents of the FBI and task force officers of the Joint Terrorism Task Force in Newark, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge George M. Crouch Jr., with the investigation leading to today’s guilty plea. She also thanked officers of the Trenton Police Department, under the direction of Police Director Steve E. Wilson; troopers of the New Jersey State Police, under the direction of Col. Patrick J. Callahan; and officers of the New Jersey Department of Corrections, under the direction of Commissioner Marcus O. Hicks, for their assistance.

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

21-345 

Defense counsel: Lisa Van Hoeck., Trenton, New Jersey




Trenton Burns As Rioters Torch Cars, Loot Stores And Clash With Police After “Peaceful Protest” Goes Violent At Dusk

Acting AG Bruck Announces Indictment of 20 Members and Associates of Violent “Get Money Boys” Gang Allegedly Linked to Five Shootings in Trenton

Alleged Leader Charles M. Willis and Others Charged in 2019 Murder and 2020 Shooting That Left 12-Year-Old Girl in Critical Condition


July 29, 2021

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Acting Attorney General Andrew J. Bruck today announced the indictment of 20 alleged members and associates of the “Get Money Boys” or “GMB,” a violent gang allegedly linked to multiple shootings in Trenton, including a December 2019 murder of a 32-year-old man, the attempted murder of a police officer in February 2020, and a June 2020 shooting that wounded several bystanders on Wood Street, including a 12-year-old girl who was critically injured.

Acting on intelligence from the Trenton Police Department about alleged gun violence by GMB members, the Division of Criminal Justice Gangs & Organized Crime Bureau began investigating the gang and its alleged leader, Charles M. Willis, aka “Charly Wingate” or “Gate,” in late 2019. They collaborated with the Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office, New Jersey State Police, Trenton Police Department, West Windsor Police Department, Hamilton Police Department, Ewing Police Department, Mercer County Shooting Response Team, and Mercer County Corrections.

The investigation led to numerous arrests last summer as violence linked to GMB escalated during the COVID pandemic, culminating in the June 3, 2020 shooting on Wood Street. Alleged GMB member Davion Fenderson allegedly attempted to murder a man, firing from a car at a crowded porch. The targeted man was only grazed, but gunfire struck three other victims, critically injuring two—a man who was shot in the chest, and the 12-year-old girl, who was shot in the abdomen.

Investigators—who had already arrested Willis and five associates in connection with the December 2019 murder, the attempted murder of the police officer, and another prior shooting—arrested 10 more alleged GMB members beginning two days after the Wood Street shooting.

The July 23, 2021 indictment charges all 20 defendants with first-degree racketeering. Fenderson was directly indicted for attempted murder and aggravated assault in the Wood Street shooting, and the indictment also charges Willis with those offenses for allegedly ordering the shooting. In addition, On February 12, 2020, GMB members allegedly shot at two men, causing them to crash their car, and when a police officer pursued the GMB members, they allegedly fired at him. The officer was not hit. Those men and Willis are charged with attempted murder and aggravated assault in the shooting involving the two civilians.

“We can and must end gun violence in New Jersey, and this latest indictment reflects our commitment to doing so,” said Acting Attorney General Bruck. “We are using every tool and resource at our disposal to keep the residents of New Jersey safe.”

“The Division of Criminal Justice and its partners acted with a sense of urgency when they arrested members of this gang last summer as violence escalated,” said Director Lyndsay V. Ruotolo of the Division of Criminal Justice. “Because of the intelligence-driven investigation we had conducted, we were prepared to act swiftly to protect Trenton residents. This indictment is an important next step in our efforts to keep the community safe by keeping these alleged gang members behind bars.”

“The Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office is extremely proud of major collaborative investigations such as the one that led to these indictments,” said Mercer County Prosecutor Angelo J. Onofri. “When we all partner together to stop the criminal activities that threaten the safety of our citizens, we send a message to these violent gang members that their destruction won’t be tolerated in our communities.”

“We remain steadfast in our commitment to our law enforcement partners and the residents of Trenton to continue to aggressively pursue violent criminals and criminal organizations whose actions far too often have tragic and unintended consequences—like the shooting of an innocent 12-year-old child,” said Colonel Patrick CallahanSuperintendent of the New Jersey State Police.  “Today’s indictments are the first step to ensuring that those responsible are held accountable.”

It is alleged that the Get Money Boys, under the leadership of Willis, controlled heroin and cocaine distribution in the area around the Oakland Street Apartments in Trenton. Willis allegedly gave orders to lower ranking GMB members to carry out acts of violence against rivals on behalf of the gang. In addition to being charged with other defendants in first-degree counts of murder, attempted murder, and conspiracy to commit murder, Willis is charged with first-degree leader of a narcotics trafficking network and first-degree promoting organized street crime.

Many of the defendants face narcotics and/or weapons offenses. In addition, the 61-count indictment charges defendants in connection with the following shootings:

  • Sept. 17, 2019 Shooting.  Shaiquan Hearns is charged with attempted murder, aggravated assault, and weapons offenses for allegedly shooting a man in the leg in the early morning hours of Sept. 17, 2019 on Lamberton Street in Trenton.
     
  • Dec. 27, 2019 Murder of Michael Barnes.  Michael Barnes, 32, was shot in the face on Commonwealth Avenue in Trenton on the night of Dec. 27. Davion Fenderson, Willis, Hearns, and Richard Fenderson are charged with murder.
     
  • Feb. 12, 2020 Shooting of Civilians and Attempted Murder of Police Officer.  On Feb. 12, GMB members allegedly shot at two men, causing them to crash their car.  When a police officer pursued the GMB members, they allegedly fired at him. He was not hit.  Hearns, Dion Battle, and Yahonatan Salter are charged with attempted murder and aggravated assault in the shooting involving the officer. Those men and Willis are charged with attempted murder and aggravated assault in the shooting involving the two civilians.
     
  • May 1, 2020 Shooting. On the night of May 1, 2020, five GMB members allegedly opened fire on a group of individuals on Sanhican Drive in Trenton, wounding two men. Willis, Shawn Anderson, Bobby Hood, Zaire Jackson, and David Williams are charged with attempted murder, aggravated assault, and weapons offenses in that shooting.

The state grand jury indictment is posted online at 


The indictment charges the following defendants with first-degree racketeering and other offenses:

  1. Charles M. Willis, 28, of Willingboro, N.J.
  2. Shaiquan Hearns, 22, of Trenton, N.J.
  3. Davion Fenderson, 27, of Trenton, N.J.
  4. Richard Fenderson, 33, of Trenton, N.J.
  5. Bobby Hood, 29, of Trenton, N.J.
  6. Dion Battle, 29, of Trenton, N.J.
  7. Yahonatan Salter, 29, of Trenton, N.J.
  8. Shawn Anderson, 23, of Trenton, N.J.
  9. Zaire Jackson, 26, of Trenton, N.J.
  10. David Williams, 29, of Camden, N.J.
  11. Dahquay Poole, 18, of Trenton, N.J.
  12. Tre Whetstone, 27, of Trenton, N.J.
  13. Charles J. Willis (Willis’ father), 50, of Lawrenceville, N.J.
  14. Fredrick Eutsey, 46, of Ewing, N.J.
  15. John M. Colvin Jr., 24, of Trenton, N.J.
  16. Laurence Green, 45, of Trenton, N.J.
  17. Briana Blue, 24, of Princeton, N.J.
  18. Tameka Flemming, 31, of Trenton, N.J.
  19. Ashley Jones, 31, of Trenton, N.J.
  20. Brittani Mims, 32, of Trenton, N.J.


Acting Attorney General Bruck commended all of the prosecutors, detectives, investigators and officers who participated in the investigation for the Division of Criminal Justice, Mercer County Prosecutor’s Office, New Jersey State Police, Trenton Police Department, Trenton Shooting Response Team, and New Jersey Department of Corrections.

Deputy Attorneys General Cassandra Montalto and Jaclyn Poulton presented the indictment to the state grand jury for the Division of Criminal Justice Gangs & Organized Crime Bureau, under the supervision of Deputy Bureau Chief Cassandra Montalto, Bureau Chief Lauren Scarpa Yfantis, and DCJ Deputy Director Annmarie Taggart.

The detectives who conducted the investigation for the Division of Criminal Justice are Lt. Brian Woolston, Sgt. Kevin Gannon, Detective Scott Caponi, former Detective Zachary Grey, and other members of the Gangs & Organized Crime Central Squad, under the supervision of former Lt. Brian Bruton, Deputy Chief of Detectives Frederic Moore, and Chief of Detectives Weldon Powell.

First-degree murder carries a sentence of life in state prison, including 30 years of parole ineligibility, while the first-degree charges of attempted murder and conspiracy to commit murder carry a sentence of 10 to 30 years in state prison. The other first-degree charges carry a sentence of 10 to 20 years in prison and fine of up to $200,000. The racketeering charge carries a period of parole ineligibility equal to 85 percent of the sentence imposed.

Second-degree crimes carry a sentence of five to 10 years in state prison and a fine of up to $150,000. Possession of a weapon as a convicted felon carries a mandatory period of parole ineligibility of five years, and unlawful possession of a weapon carries a mandatory period of parole ineligibility equal to one-third to one-half of the sentence imposed or three years, whichever is greater. Third-degree crimes carry a sentence of three to five years in state prison and a fine of up to $15,000. 

The charges are merely accusations and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.

Defense Attorneys

For Charles M. Willis: Alan D. Bowman, Esq.

For Hearns: Michael R. Rosas, Esq.

For Hood: Patrick C. O’Hara Jr., Esq.

For Battle: Rukiya A. Blackwell, Esq.

For Salter: Deirdre C. Smith, Esq.

For Anderson: Arun D. Lavine, Esq.

For Jackson: Peter V. Abatemarco, Esq.

For Williams: Bruce L. Throckmorten, Esq.

For Poole: Kevin Hewitt Jr., Esq.

For Whetstone: John S. Furlong, Esq.

For Charles J. Willis: Jarred S. Freeman, Esq.

For Eutsey: Andrew Duclair, Esq.

For Colvin: Louis A. Mangione Jr., Esq.

For Blue: Mark A. Fury, Esq.

For Others: Undetermined.


Smart MS3 Health Technology Startup Based In Robbinsville, NJ

July 29, 2021

ROBBINSVILLE, NJ (MERCER)–On July 15, 2021, Smart MS3, a healthtech company building an evidence-based physical therapy solution, was accepted into Newchip’s renowned global accelerator program. With only a 7% acceptance rate, it provides over $750,000 in benefits and resources over the course of 24 weeks. This gives us ample time to learn about the expertise and knowledge that is needed to develop a startup while also furthering the development of the wearable device.

Today, 7 out of 10 patients never finish their physical therapy recovery process. Unfortunately the effect of this is twofold, not only does the patient remain injured, but the average clinic loses over $240,000 yearly due to their low retention rate. This is a loss for both patients and clinics. Our team is here to flip the script and provide a positive outlook by building a wearable solution which can objectively track the recovery progress of patients and keep them engaged.

We conducted trials at physical therapy clinics in which we found that our device has aided the clinics and patients in 2 major ways! It has increased the patient’s confidence within the PT by 5x and also kept a 100% retention rate throughout this 3-month trial. Having been provided resources by Newchip, we look to further test and develop our device until our demo day in September. “We are excited for Smart MS3 and believe they will do well at Newchip.”

The trial has helped over 40 patients and we look to continue collaborating with physical therapy clinics around New Jersey. Having worked with patients has made us realize that our device provides reassurance that exercises recommended by the physical therapists are improving their current state. Over the next few months we are looking to expand our start-up to bigger physical therapy networks.

Follow our journey through our website as we revolutionize the physical therapy industry.


Arrest Made in North Stockton Street, Trenton Murder

July 29, 2021

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Mercer County Prosecutor Angelo J. Onofri reported today that an investigation by the Mercer County Homicide Task Force has led to the arrest of a Trenton man for the recent shooting death of 53-year-old Pablo Herrera Chun.

Blake Pittman, 29, was arrested without incident Wednesday morning in Bensalem, Pennsylvania, by members of the MCHTF, the U.S. Marshals NY/NJ Regional Fugitive Task Force and the Bensalem Police Department.  He is charged with one count of first-degree murder, one count of second-degree possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose, one count of second-degree unlawful possession of a weapon and one count of second-degree certain persons not to possess a weapon.  Pittman is being held in Bucks County pending an extradition hearing.

On Wednesday, July 14, 2021, at approximately 8:40 p.m., Trenton police received a Shot Spotter activation in the area of 43 N. Stockton Street.  Responding officers located the victim, later identified as Chun, suffering from two gunshot wounds.  He was transported to the hospital where he was pronounced dead a short time later.

The investigation is ongoing.  Anyone with information is asked to call HTF Detective Karl Johnston at (609) 989-6406. Information can also be emailed to mchtftips@mercercounty.org.

Despite having been charged, every defendant is presumed innocent until found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.


According to a NJ Department of Corrections Inmate Search, Blake Pittman has been in and out of jail. The latest he was released on October 2, 2020. Offences listed are Aggravated Manslaughter two times and robbery. See graphic above from the NJ Department of Corrections website.


Previous MidJersey.News coverage:

BREAKING: Man Shot On N. Stockton Street In Trenton, Taken To Trauma Center

July 15, 2021Afternoon update here: Update: Victim Identified In Last Night’s Trenton Shooting

July 15, 2021 Update Here: UPDATE: Fatal Shooting; Trenton, N. Stockton Street Last Night

Arrest Made in North Stockton Street, Trenton Murder


Names of 2021* homicide victims: 

  1. 2/18/2021 Jabree Saunders, 26, from shooting on May 14, 2018
  2. 2/22/2021 Khalil Gibbs, 25, of West Windsor, shooting
  3. 2/25/2021 Lovelle Laramore, 60, of Trenton shooting
  4. 4/15/2021 Kaheem Carter, 22, of Trenton, shooting
  5. 4/20/2021 Shaquan McNeil, 25, of Trenton, shooting
  6. 4/24/2021 Cheryl Jones, 65, of Trenton, shooting
  7. 4/29/2021 Ramire Harvey, 25, of Trenton, shooting
  8. 5/15/2021 David Williams 36, of Trenton, shooting
  9. 5/29/2021 Edgar Geovani Sis-Luis, 34, of Trenton, aggravated manslaughter
  10. 7/05/2021 Dion Ellis, 16, Trenton, Shooting
  11. 7/14/2021 Pablo Herrera Chun, 53, Trenton, Shooting
  12. 7/19/2021 William Mitchell, 33, Trenton, Shooting
  13. 7/19/2021 Jermel Carter, 38, Trenton, Shooting

*Updated to reflect the person who died in 2021 from complications from a shooting on May 14, 2018 as per medical examiner report.




Two Vehicle Crash On Old York Road In East Windsor

July 29, 2021

EAST WINDSOR, NJ (MERCER)–Around 8:50 a.m. a two vehicle accident with airbag deployment occurred at the intersection of Old York Road and Windsor Perrineville Road. The East Windsor Police Department and East Windsor First Aid Squad were dispatched to the scene. Apparently there were no reported injuries in the two vehicle crash.

East Windsor Police is investigating the crash. No further information is available at this time.

East Windsor Township Police Blotter July 28, 2021

July 29, 2021

EAST WINDSOR TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–The East Windsor Township Police Department initiated the following police reports through Wednesday, July 28, 2021.


1) Drugs
Location: Intent Group/ 658 Etra Road Time/Date: 10:14 PM, 7-22-2021

The officer was detailed to the Intent Group located at 658 Etra Road for a report of a suspicious vehicle pulling in and out of the parking lot. During the investigation, suspected methamphetamine was located in the vehi cle. The driver was arrested and later released pending court action.

Defendant:

Charges:

Nicholas Gresko

Hamilton, NJ
26 Years of Age

Possession of a Controlled Dangerous Substance · Possession of Drug Paraphernalia

Arresting Officer: PO Christopher McDermott #117

2) DUI
Location: Twin Rivers Mall/ 659 Abbington Drive Time/ Date: 2:18 AM, 7-24-2021

The officer was detailed to the area for a report of a possible intoxicated driver who was involved in a motor vehicle accident. While en-route further information was provided that the vehicle had left the scene and was now parked on Probasco Road. Upon speaking with the driver, he exhibited signs of impairment and was placed under arrest after failing field sobriety tests. The driver was later released pending court action.

Defendant:

Charges:

Leonzo R. Roblesmenchu

East Windsor , NJ
25 Years of Age

DUI
Reckless Driving Careless Driving
Failure to Maintain Lane
Leaving the Scene of an Accident Failure to Report an Accident Uninsured Motor Vehicle

Arresting Officer: Patrol Officer Nicholas Hoffmann #108

3) DUI
Location: Probasco Road Time/Date: 2:27 AM/ 7-24-2021

The officer was detailed to the area for a report of a possible intoxicated driver who was involved in a motor vehicle accident related to the previous DUI. While en-route further information was provided that the vehicle had left the scene and was now parked on Probasco Road. Upon speaking with the driver, he exhibited signs of impairment and was placed under arrest after failing field sobriety tests . The driver was later released pending court action.

Defendant: Sergio H. Duenas East Windsor, NJ 48 Years of Age

Charges: DUI
Reckless Driving Careless Driving
Failure to Maintain Lane Unlicensed Drive Uninsured Motor Vehicle

Arresting Officer: Patrol Officer Nicholas Hoffman #108

4) DUI
Location: Route 130 South/ Hankins Road Time/ Date: 12:59 AM/ 7-25-2021

The officer conducted a motor vehicle stop after observing the vehicle fail to maintain its lane. The driver exhibited signs of impairment and was placed under arrest after failing field sobriety tests . The individual was later released pending court action.

Defendant: Nirav N. Patel Piscataway, NJ 38 Years of Age

Charges: DUI
Reckless Driving Careless Driving
Failure to Maintain Lane Failure to Keep Right

Arresting Officer: Patrol Officer Thomas Nicola #119

5) DUI
Location: 72 Route 571
Time/ Date: 2:25 AM, 7-28-2021

While conducting building checks behind East Windsor Village, the officer observed a parked vehicle with its headlights on, driver side door open and the drivei .J eeping in the driver seat. Upon speaking with the driver , he exhibited signs of impairment and was placed under arrest after failing field sobriety tests. The driver was later released pending court action.

Defendant:

Charges:

Raymundo Quiroz-Ramirez

Hightstown, NJ
28 Years of Age

DUI
Reckless Driving Careless Driving
Open Container in Motor Vehicle Consuming Alcohol in Motor Vehicle

Arresting Officer: Christopher McDermott #117


The charges referenced above are merely accusations and the press and public are reminded that all defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.


Coast Guard medevacs diver 46 miles east of Cape May, NJ

July 29, 2021

CAPE MAY, N.J. – On Wednesday July 28, 2021, The Coast Guard medevaced a diver 46 miles east of Cape May on Wednesday.

Watchstanders at the Coast Guard Sector Delaware Bay command center received a report via VHF channel 16 that a 50-year-old woman was unresponsive after returning from a dive off the dive vessel Gypsie Blood. The diver dove to a depth of 150- feet before resurfacing unconscious.

Coast Guard Sector Delaware Bay dispatched an MH-65 Dolphin helicopter aircrew from Coast Guard Station Atlantic City to the scene.

The aircrew medically evacuated the woman and transported her to the closest decompression chamber available at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.

“Without the proper communication that we had, we would not have been able to safely conduct the mission especially considering the distance offshore that the vessel was,” said Lt. Anthony Barletta, the command duty officer in the command center. “A marine band radio is the best way to get first responders on scene when an emergency arises.”



Vehicles Collide, One Flips Causing 2 Mile Traffic Jam On I-195 West Bound In Hamilton

July 28, 2021

HAMILTON TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–It appears that two vehicles collided on I-195 West Bound near mile marker 4.5 collided around 6:45 p.m. leaving one overturned on the right shoulder and another in the median strip. The Hamilton Township Fire Department, RWJ EMS and Capital Health Paramedics responded for reports of a person trapped in one of the vehicles. Upon arrival of the fire department there was no entrapment but EMS was needed to evaluate the occupants of the vehicles for injuries. It was unclear if anyone was transported to the hospital from the crash.

Traffic was backed up at least 2 miles from the 4.5 mile marker to the NJ Turnpike around mile marker 6.6 while the crash was cleaned up.

NJ State Police is investigating the crash. No further information is available at this time.


Lawrence Township, One Overturned In Two Vehicle Crash, Route 1 – Brunswick Pike

July 28, 2021

LAWRENCE TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–Today, around 4:30 p.m. on Brunswick Pike (Route 1) Northbound in area of Greenberg Road (just prior to McDonalds and Wawa) at least two vehicles, one of which overturned were involved in a serious crash.

The Lawrence Township Fire Department Rescue 22 and Rescue 21 responded for a reported person trapped in a vehicle but were not needed. Apparently, the driver was not trapped but just needed assistance getting out of the vehicle.

Capital Health MSU transported one person to the hospital and Lawrence Township EMS 129 treated on scene but that person did not wish transport to the hospital.

Brunswick Pike Northbound traffic was backed up and reduced to one lane going past the scene. The Southbound traffic was also backed up due to rubberneckers.

Lawrence Township Police Department is investigating the crash. No further information is available at this time.


Seaside Heights Man Charged With Attempted Murder From Yesterday’s Incident At Brick Township ShopRite

July 28, 2021

BRICK TOWNSHIP, NJ (OCEAN)–Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley D. Billhimer and Brick Township Chief of Police James Riccio announced that on July 26, 2021, Michael Stallworth, 37, of Seaside Heights, was charged with Attempted Murder in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:5-1a(1) and N.J.S.A. 2C:11-3a(1); Possession of a Weapon for an Unlawful Purpose in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:39-4d; and Unlawful Possession of a Weapon in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:39-5d, relative to a stabbing incident that occurred in Brick Township on July 26, 2021.

On July 26, 2021, at approximately 4:00 p.m., Officers of the Brick Township Police Department responded to the parking lot of the ShopRite on Route 70 in Brick in response to a male victim having been stabbed in the parking lot.  Responding Officers found a 44-year-old male victim with apparent stab wounds to his back.  The victim was transported to Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune for treatment of his injuries, where he is reported to be in critical but stable condition.

An investigation by the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crime Unit, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office High Tech Crime Unit, Brick Township Police Department, and Ocean County Sheriff’s Office Crime Scene Investigation Unit, has resulted in Stallworth being identified as the individual who stabbed the victim and caused his injuries.  Stallworth has not yet been apprehended, and is presently considered a fugitive from justice. 

The investigation further revealed that Kareem Reeves, 32, of Lakewood, removed Stallworth’s vehicle from the ShopRite parking lot after the stabbing in an apparent effort to hinder Stallworth’s apprehension.  As such, Reeves was charged with Hindering in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:29-3a(1); he was arrested and transported to the Ocean County Jail, where he is currently lodged pending a detention hearing.

“Stallworth is encouraged to turn himself in; a warrant has been issued for his arrest and his name has been entered in the National Crime Information Center database.  Anyone with information concerning Stallworth’s whereabouts – or any information at all regarding this investigation – is urged to contact Detective Lindsay Woodfield of the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office at 732-929-2027, extension 3989, or Detective Michael Bennett of the Brick Township Police Department at 732-262-1122,” Prosecutor Billhimer stated.

Prosecutor Billhimer and Chief Riccio acknowledge the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crime Unit, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office High Tech Crime Unit, Brick Township Police Department Detective Bureau and Patrol Division, Lakewood Township Police Department, and Ocean County Sheriff’s Office Crime Scene Investigation Unit, for their collaborative efforts in connection with this investigation.

The charges referenced above are merely accusations and the press and public are reminded that all defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.  R.P.C. 3.6(b)(6).


Pagans Motorcycle Club Leader Pulled Over In Mercer County, NJ, Admits To Illegally Possessing A Firearm

Law enforcement pulled the vehicle over in Mercer County, New Jersey. Law enforcement recovered a loaded Ruger P345 .45 caliber handgun from a front-seat compartment in the vehicle.


NEWARK, NJ — A Suffolk County, New York admitted today to illegally possessing a firearm, Acting U.S. Attorney Rachael A. Honig announced.

Keith Richter, a/k/a “Conan,” 62, of Bay Shore, New York, pleaded guilty by videoconference before U.S. District Judge Kevin McNulty to an Information charging him with one count of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

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

Richter is the national president of the Pagan’s Motorcycle Club (the “Pagans”)—an outlaw motorcycle gang known by law enforcement to engage in illegal activity including narcotics trafficking, weapons trafficking, and violent crimes.

On or about February 20, 2021, the Pagans hosted a party in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. While Richter was traveling from the party to his home in Suffolk County, New York, law enforcement pulled the vehicle over in Mercer County, New Jersey. Law enforcement recovered a loaded Ruger P345 .45 caliber handgun from a front-seat compartment in the vehicle. As a result, law enforcement obtained a warrant for Richter’s arrest, which was executed on February 26, 2021.

Richter was previously convicted of felony offenses, including conspiracy to commit murder and aggravated assault in aid of racketeering, for which he served a sixteen-year term of imprisonment.

The offense to which Richter pleaded guilty carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000. Sentencing is scheduled for Dec. 3. 2021.

Acting U.S. Attorney Honig credited special agents of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, Newark Division, under the direction of Acting Special Agent in Charge Toby C. Taylor; special agents of the Drug Enforcement Administration, Newark Division, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Susan A. Gibson; the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office, under the direction of District Attorney Timothy D. Sini; the Union County Prosecutor’s Office, under the direction of William A. Daniel; and the New Jersey State Police, under the direction of Colonel Patrick J. Callahan, with the investigation leading to today’s guilty plea.

This case is also part of Project Guardian, the Department of Justice’s signature initiative to reduce gun violence and enforce federal firearms laws. Initiated by the Attorney General in the fall of 2019, Project Guardian draws upon the Department’s past successful programs to reduce gun violence; enhances coordination of federal, state, local and tribal authorities in investigating and prosecuting gun crimes; improves information sharing by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives when a prohibited individual attempts to purchase a firearm and is denied by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), to include taking appropriate actions when a prospective purchaser is denied by the NICS for mental health reasons; and ensured that federal resources are directed at the criminals posing the greatest threat to our communities.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Robert Frazer, R. Joseph Gribko, and Samantha C. Fasanello, of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Newark.

21-339 

Defense counsel: James R. Froccaro, Jr., Esq., Port Washington, New York


Related article here:

Eleven Members Of The Pagan’s Motorcycle Club Charged With Narcotics Distribution, Firearms Offences and Violent Crimes In Aid Of Racketeering


Governor Murphy and Commissioner Persichilli Strongly Recommend Masking in Indoor Settings with Increased Risk

July 28, 2021

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Following yesterday’s announcement by the Centers for Disease Control regarding masking, Governor Phil Murphy and New Jersey Department of Health Commissioner Judy Persichilli today strongly recommended that both vaccinated and unvaccinated residents wear masks in indoor settings when there is increased risk. 

Examples of such situations include:

• Crowded indoor settings

• Indoor settings involving activities with close contact with others who may not be fully vaccinated

• Indoor settings where the vaccine status of other individuals in the setting is unknown

• Where an individual is immunocompromised or at increased risk for severe disease

Governor Murphy and Commissioner Persichilli made the following statement:

“Our metrics are trending in the wrong direction, and new data suggests the Delta variant is more transmissible even among vaccinated individuals, which is why we are making this strong recommendation. 

“Fortunately, our numbers are a fraction of those in many other states, most of which have significantly lower vaccination rates. Should our numbers reach those levels, we reserve the right to take more drastic action, including a statewide mask mandate.

“We have crushed this virus repeatedly like no other state in the nation, and we are proud to boast among the country’s highest vaccination rates. But at this point, given where our metrics are now, we feel the best course of action is to strongly encourage every New Jerseyan, and every visitor to our state, to take personal responsibility and mask up indoors when prudent.

“And we equally encourage every unvaccinated resident or visitor to get vaccinated. The vaccines are proven safe and highly effective, and are the surest way we can end this pandemic.”


Fishing Boat Hits Rocks In Manasquan Inlet And Sinks

July 28, 2021

Story, Photos and Video by: Ryan Mack, Jersey Shore Fire Response – MidJersey.News Shore Bureau

MANASQUAN INLET, POINT PLESANT, NJ (0CEAN)–Around 10:40 p.m. last night July 27, 2021 a fishing vessel reported that they were taking on water to the USCG Manasquan Inlet station. Initial reports said they had struck inlet rocks and had a hole in the vessel. Witnesses at the Manasquan Inlet (Point Pleasant Side) said that they saw a boat attempt to leave the inlet but struck the rocks and heard a bang then saw the craft turn around at a decent speed and go back into the inlet. District 27 (Manasquan Fire) was alerted of the boat hitting the rocks and dispatched Marine 27. The U.S. Coast Guard spotted the boat docked at the Wharfside Seafood & Patio Bar partially sunk. Marine 27 and Point Pleasant Beach Police were also on the scene. Two were safely off the craft and on the dock with no injuries. The cause of the crash is still unknown and is being investigated by the USCG & The New Jersey State Police.

MidJersey.News has reached out to the Public Affairs office USCG Atlantic City and NJ State Police and waiting for official press information. Once official public information is received the story will be updated.



Seasonably Warm Weather Today, Smoke Returns

July 28, 2021

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–National Weather Service reports that there will be seasonably warm weather today with a high of 87F and passing shower in the southern half of the region.

Check out Air Now “Fire and Smoke Map” showing our area in relation to the forest fires out west. It does not seem as bad as last week but there could be enhanced sunrises and sunsets depending on how dense the smoke is at the time in the upper atmosphere. These maps were from the Air Now government website this morning.




Stabbing At Brick Township ShopRite Parking Lot Under Investigation

July 27, 2021

BRICK TOWNSHIP, NJ (OCEAN)–Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley D. Billhimer and Brick Township Chief of Police James Riccio announced that on July 26, 2021, at approximately 4:00 p.m., Brick Township Police responded to the parking lot of the ShopRite on Route 70 in Brick in reference to a male victim that had been stabbed in the parking lot. Responding officers found a 44-year-old male victim with apparent stab wounds to his back. The victim was transported to Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune for treatment of his injuries where he is reported to be in critical but stable conditio

Prosecutor Billhimer and Chief Riccio would like to stress that this is an active and ongoing investigation by the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crime Unit, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office High Tech Crime Unit, Brick Township Police Department and the Ocean County Sheriff’s Office Crime Scene Investigation Unit. “There is no danger to the public at this time, our investigation indicates this was a targeted attack against the victim,” Prosecutor Billhimer stated. “We will release more information as it becomes available,” Prosecutor Billhimer concluded.

Anyone in possession of information related to this investigation is urged to contact Detective Lindsay Woodfield of the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office at 732-929-2027, extension 3989, or Detective Michael Bennett of the Brick Township Police Department at 732-262-1122.


Courtyard by Marriott, Hamilton’s Fourth Hotel Opens

July 27, 2021

HAMILTON TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)–Hamilton Township Mayor Jeff Martin and Councilman Anthony Carabelli, Jr. welcomed Courtyard by Marriott with a grand opening ceremony and ribbon cutting on July 9th 2021. Also in attendance were Associate Director of Economic Development, Kate Kane, Chair of SHOP Hamilton, Jay Dugan, and President and CEO of the Princeton Mercer Regional Chamber, Hal English. 

“We are excited to have Courtyard by Marriott open in Hamilton, expanding the accommodations we are able to offer travelers visiting our area both for business and leisure,” said Mayor Jeff Martin. 

This is the second hotel that The Briad Group has brought to Hamilton Township, bringing the total number of hotels in Hamilton Township to four. The new hotel offers an upscale dining experience with a restaurant and bar onsite including a beautiful patio complete with lounge style furniture and fire pits. The Hotel also provides guests with a state of the art fitness center with peloton bikes, putting green turf and a salt water indoor pool. The new lobby experience offers engaging technology and inviting flexible spaces to work and relax including media pods. In addition, the hotel has a 624-square foot meeting room equipped with audio visual equipment.

The Briad Group, headquartered in Livingston, NJ, is best known for being experts in various divisions within the hospitality industry – their quick-service division operates Wendy’s Old Fashioned Hamburgers restaurants; lodging, which develops and operates hotels under the Marriott and Hilton brands; and their newest ventures, unique rooftop and lounge experiences which include the Bradford Rooftop in Bridgewater, NJ, the Concourse Club in Wood-Ridge, NJ, and Techobesso and Love Story in San Diego, CA.

Visit www.hamiltonnj.com/economicdevelopment to learn of the new businesses that have recently opened or have relocated to Hamilton and read up on why Hamilton is a great place for businesses to call home! To learn more about Courtyard by Marriott Hamilton, visit their website www.briad.com/event/courtyard-by-marriott-hamilton.

Courtyard Hamilton

530 US Route 130

Hamilton, New Jersey 08691


Dunkin’ of Philadelphia Awards Six South Jersey Students with Academic Scholarships

July 27, 2021

Philadelphia, PA. (July 26, 2021) – Dunkin’ and its greater Philadelphia-area franchisees, in partnership with Scholarship America, today announced the recipients of its twelfth annual Philadelphia Regional Scholarship Program. The program helps high school seniors and college students in Southeastern Pennsylvania, Southern New Jersey, and Kent and New Castle counties in Delaware pursue a part-time or full-time undergraduate degree at the institution of their choice.

From over 900 applicants, Dunkin’ and Scholarship America selected 25 students to receive a $2,000 academic scholarship to an accredited two or four-year college, university, or vocational-technical school of their choice for fall 2021. Dunkin’s Philadelphia Regional Scholarship Program was open to current part-time and full-time undergraduate students and high school seniors. Dunkin’ awarded a total of $50,000 to the 25 recipients who were selected based on their academic records, demonstrated leadership skills, and overall commitment to their schools and local communities.

To date, the Dunkin’ Philadelphia Regional Scholarship Program has awarded $500,000 in scholarships to 300 outstanding high school seniors and college students. The program was founded in 2009 by Dunkin’s Philadelphia-area franchisees as a way to ease the financial burden of college for students throughout the region.

“On behalf of my fellow Philadelphia franchisees, we are honored to award these 25 exceptional students with the 2021 Dunkin’ Philadelphia Regional Scholarships,” said Perry Shah, local Dunkin’ franchisee and Philadelphia regional advertising committee chairman. “We are proud to continue the tradition to further students’ educational goals in our community as well as celebrate a major milestone this year: providing over half a million dollars to our local students since the program’s inception in 2009!”

The 2021 Dunkin’ Regional Scholarship recipients will be honored at an awards ceremony from 2-4 p.m. on Saturday, July 31, 2021, at Cherry Street Pier. More details on the awards ceremony to come in the following weeks.

The 2021 Dunkin’ Regional Scholarship recipients are as follows: (Six South Jersey below out of 25 total) Photos provided by: Dunkin Scholarship Program:

Atlantic County 

Recipient: Abigail Smith

Hometown: Hammonton, NJ

High School: Hammonton High School

University: Stockton University

Bio: Abigail Smith is a recent graduate from Hammonton High School, where she was the National Honor Society Vice President. In addition, Smith was a Team Captain for Field Hockey and Track & Field and earned nine Varsity Letters in three sports throughout high school. In her free time, Abigail enjoyed participating in a variety of service-oriented clubs. This fall, Abigail will attend Stockton University, where she plans to pursue a degree in Health Sciences. 


Burlington County

Recipient: Amanda Neve

Hometown: Browns Mills, NJ

High School: Pemberton Township High School 

University: University of Miami

Bio: Amanda Neve is a recent graduate from Pemberton Township High School and Rowan College at Burlington County, Class of 2021, where she received her Associate’s Degree in Biology. Neve graduated with high honors in high school and college and graduated top 10 in her class at Pemberton Township High School. This fall, Amanda will attend University of Miami, where she plans to pursue a degree in Biochemistry And Molecular Bio. 


Camden County 

Recipient: Raphael Littwin

Hometown: Cherry Hill, NJ 

High School: Cherry Hill High School West

University: University of Pennsylvania

Bio: Raphael Littwin is a recent graduate from Cherry Hill High School West, where he was the Valedictorian of his graduating class. Littwin was involved in Student Government, Peer Leaders, National Honor Society, and a member of the Varsity Volleyball Team. Raphael also held leadership positions throughout high school, including DECA Chapter President, Principal’s Advisory Council Member, Spanish Honor Society President, and Jewish Student Union President. This fall, Raphael will attend the University of Pennsylvania.


Cape May County 

Recipient: Julia Knopp

Hometown: Ocean View, NJ

High School: Ocean City High School 

University: Northeastern University

Bio: Julia Knopp is a recent graduate from Ocean City High School where she graduated Summa Cum Laude. Knopp was a member of the National Honor Society and a 4-Year Varsity Spring Track Athlete. In her free time during the summer, Julia worked at an ice cream shop. 


Gloucester County

Recipient: Kelly Wei

Hometown: Sewell, NJ

High School: Washington Township High School

University: Brown University

Bio: Kelly Wei is a recent graduate from Washington Township High School. She held leadership roles during high school, including Class Charge of Class Council Executive Board, Asian American Club President, Yearbook President, Co-President of Freshmen Transition, Secretary of Business Education Honor Society. Wei was also a member of the National English Honor Society. Kelly was awarded Senior Hall of Fame recipient. In her free time, she enjoys reading, traveling, and boba. This fall, Kelly will attend Brown University, where she plans to pursue a degree in Computer Science.


Mercer County

Recipient: Alyssa Deevey

Hometown: Robbinsville, NJ

High School: Robbinsville High School

University: Ramapo College of New Jersey

Bio: Alyssa Deevey is a recent graduate from Robbinsville High School, where she was a four-year Principal Honor Roll Student. Deevey participated in Field Hockey and Lacrosse. Alyssa enjoys spending time with family and friends, traveling, the beach, community service, and church in her free time. Alyssa is a current employee at Dunkin’. 

This fall, Alyssa will attend Ramapo College of New Jersey, where she plans to pursue a degree in Nursing.  


Note: All photos provided by Dunkin Scholarship program.


Trenton Resident Arrested In July 1 Ewing Shooting

July 27, 2021

EWING TOWNSHIP, NJ (MERCER)—Police said, that on July 1, 2021, at 10:25 p.m. Ewing Township police responded to shots fire in the 300 Block of Berwyn Avenue. The first responding officers observed a male victim that appeared to be suffering from multiple gunshot wounds. The victim was transported to the hospital for treatment of his injuries.

Police using information developed during the investigation, Detective Nicholas Muscente signed a criminal complaint against the alleged shooter, identified as Nydirah L. Leary of Trenton, NJ Leary is charged with Attempted Murder, Possession of a Weapon for Unlawful Purpose, Possession of a Weapon, and Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon.

With the assistance of the New Jersey State Police, Leary was subsequently arrested on July 24, 2021.

Anyone with any information concerning this incident is asked to contact Detective Nicholas Muscente at (609) 882-1313 x 7596 or Ewing Police Tip Line at (609) 882-7530, police say not to use the tip line for emergencies that require immediate response.


Related MidJersey.News story here: 21 Year Old Trenton Man Shot In Ewing



Trenton Firefighters Save Row Of 5 Attached Homes

July 27, 2021

TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Around 11:20 a.m. Trenton Fire Department responded to 511 Centre Street for a house fire, a large column of smoke could be seen for miles. Upon arrival firefighters were met with heavy fire on the exterior of the structure that was extending into the attached 5 row homes. Firefighters knocked down the exterior fire and advanced hand lines inside, fire extended into the common attic area. After an aggressive interior attack firefighters were able to bring the fire under control saving severe damage to most of the row of homes.

Signal 22 responded to the scene for rehab with cold drinks and water due to the high heat and humidity. Surrounding township fire departments covered the city until crews were completed their assignment.

Note: originally stated was 2 alarm but was a 1 alarm plus extra not a full 2-alarm fire.



Trenton And Pemberton Men, Indicted for Shooting At Pemberton Police Officer

July 26, 2021

Burlington County Prosecutor Scott Coffina announced that two men have been indicted for shooting at the patrol vehicle of a Pemberton Township police officer seven years ago in the Sunbury Village section of Pemberton Township.

Tayron Brown, 24, of Trenton, was indicted on charges of Attempted Murder (First Degree), Conspiracy to Commit Murder (First Degree), Possession of a Weapon for an Unlawful Purpose (Second Degree), Unlawful Possession of a Weapon (Second Degree) and Aggravated Assault (Third Degree).

Brown’s co-defendant, Kavon Carter, 23, of Pemberton Township, was indicted on charges of Possession of a Weapon for an Unlawful Purpose (Second Degree) and Aggravated Assault (Third Degree).

The indictment was returned July 16 and signed by Prosecutor Coffina. An arraignment will be held soon in Superior Court. Brown is presently incarcerated in New Jersey state prison, and Carter is in the Burlington County Jail, both for unrelated offenses.

Brown and Carter were initially charged in September 2019, however the opportunity to seek an indictment was delayed because grand juries were not convened during the pandemic.

The investigation revealed that an officer was parked along Lemmon Avenue on September 24, 2014, when a bullet fired in his direction struck the roof of the marked patrol vehicle, approximately six inches above the officer’s head.

The investigation was conducted by the Prosecutor’s Office and the Pemberton Township Police Department. Brown and Carter are being prosecuted by Assistant Prosecutor Mike Angermeier, supervisor of the BCPO Gang, Gun and Narcotics Task Force.

An indictment is an accusation. Defendants are presumed innocent unless or until proven guilty.


South Toms River Man Sentenced To 10 Years In NJ State Prison For Aggravated Manslaughter

July 26, 2021

TOMS RIVER, NJ (OCEAN)–Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley D. Billhimer announced that on July 26, 2021, Marcus Samuels, 32, of South Toms River, was sentenced by the Honorable Guy P. Ryan, J.S.C., to ten years New Jersey State Prison (NJSP) as a result of his previously entered guilty plea to Aggravated Manslaughter in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:11-4a(1), relative to the shooting death of Willie Love, 27, of Beachwood, that occurred in South Toms River on June 8, 2015. This sentence will be subject to the terms of the No Early Release Act, N.J.S.A. 2C:43-7.2, meaning that Samuels will be required to serve at least 85 percent of his prison sentence before he may be considered for parole eligibility. Additionally, Samuels was sentenced to ten years NJSP as a result of a previously entered guilty plea to Conspiracy to Commit Witness Tampering in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:5-2 and N.J.S.A. 2C:28-5a(1), and five years NJSP in connection with an unrelated charge of Aggravated Assault in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:12-1b, relative to an incident that occurred in Seaside Heights on May 3, 2015. Samuels pled guilty to all charges before Judge Ryan on June 4, 2021. The sentences will run concurrently.

On June 8, 2015, Detectives from the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crime Unit and Officers of the South Toms River Police Department responded to Community Medical Center in Toms River for a report of a male having suffered a gunshot wound to the chest. The male was identified to be Willie Love, who later succumbed to his injuries at Community Medical Center.

An investigation by the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crime Unit and South Toms River Police Department revealed that Samuels – who was driving a 2004 Dodge Nitro – pulled alongside a vehicle being operated by Mr. Love which contained three passengers. Samuels then recklessly fired a handgun into Mr. Love’s vehicle, striking Mr. Love, which led to his death. Samuels turned himself into law enforcement in the presence of his attorney on June 12, 2015, and has been lodged in the Ocean County Jail since that date.

While Samuels was detained in the Ocean County Jail pending trial on these charges, he conspired with other inmates to influence a witness into retracting or changing a statement previously provided to law enforcement in connection with the investigation.

Prosecutor Billhimer acknowledges the diligent efforts of Chief Narcotics Assistant Prosecutor William Porter and Assistant Prosecutor Stephen Burke who handled the case on behalf of the State, as well as the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crime Unit, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office High Tech Crime Unit, South Toms River Police Department, Ocean County Sheriff’s Office Crime Scene Investigation Unit, and New Jersey State Police Office of Forensic Science, for their collaborative efforts in connection with this investigation, ultimately resulting in Samuels’ state prison sentence.


Monmouth County Corrections Officer Pleads Guilty To Shoplifting

22 Year Law Enforcement Veteran To Forfeit Public Employment

July 26, 2021

FREEHOLD, NJ (MONMOUTH)–A Monmouth County Corrections officer has pled guilty after shoplifting in Ocean Township and West Long Branch, announced Acting Monmouth County Prosecutor Lori Linskey.

Suzanne Simone, 53, of Ocean Township, a 22-year-veteran of the Monmouth County Correctional Institution, pled guilty today before Judge Ellen Torregossa-O’Connor to fourth degree Shoplifting in connection with multiple instances where she failed to pay for items at local Target and Home Depot stores. Simone’s plea calls for her to pay restitution to both stores in a total amount of $1,320.90. Simone has also forfeited public office in New Jersey.  She will receive non-custodial probation and is not allowed to return to either store.

This follows an investigation by the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office which revealed that on multiple occasions, Simone “skip scanned” items, essentially scanning multiple smaller items, and not scanning larger items or pretending to scan them and leaving the store without paying for them. In multiple instances, Simone was wearing her uniform while committing the theft. Some of the stolen goods were later recovered from her residence.

Simone is currently suspended from her position at the Monmouth County Correctional Institution. She is scheduled to be sentenced on September 24, 2021 at 9:00 a.m.

The case is assigned to Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutor Melanie Falco, Director of the Office’s Professional Responsibilities and Bias Crime Unit.

Simone is represented by Robert Holden Esq., of Shrewsbury.

Citizens may report concerns via the following: Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office Corruption Tip Line – 855-7-UNJUST (855 786-5878); or E-mail at: corruption@mcponj.org write “Corruption/Misconduct Tip” in the subject line.