Assemblyman Nelson Albano says statistics show a change in the gun law in the state will drop the crime rate. According to Albano, in states where the right to carry laws were loosened, crime went down around 25 percent in the following year or two. State Senator Jeff Van Drew proposed the change and suggested that residents pass safety courses and background checks, but be allowed to carry firearms. Reaction is mixed at this time, but Van Drew also said a financial benefit could come to the state. He estimates over $10 million a year could be brought in by changing the law and making the carrying gun owners pay a $500 fee annually.
Forecasters are watching a Tropical Depression that could become a tropical storm today. Tropical Depression is still south of Florida right now and the National Weather Service is calling for the majority of the weather to stay to the west and hit in Pennsylvania. However, rain is still expected to fall in South Jersey. Anywhere from one to two inches of rain is possible, beginning late this afternoon into Thursday. A flood watch has been issued as a result of this storm, along with a high surf advisory. Most of the rain will be coming in advance of the actually storm itself. The eye of the storm is expected to move through the area sometime late Thursday or early Friday.
An Atlantic County Grand Jury indicted a Camden County man today on charges of second-degree attempted luring and second-degree attempted sexual assault, for engaging in sexually explicit conversations and sending sexually explicit webcam videos of himself to a Prosecutor’s Office detective posing as a 14-year-old girl, Atlantic County Prosecutor Ted Housel stated.
On Aug. 2, William Ritchie 52, of Gloucester City, traveled from his home in Camden County to Mays Landing to meet the girl but instead was met by members of the Prosecutor’s Office Computer Crimes Unit. In addition to attempted luring and attempted sexual assault, the defendant was indicted on charges of third-degree attempted endangering and fourth-degree attempted criminal sexual contact, according to Assistant Prosecutor Janet Gravitz who presented the case to the Grand Jury.
It is alleged in the 11-count indictment, that Ritchie met the girl in an Internet chat room at the end of July and had several sexually explicit conversations with her before arranging to meet her.
If convicted, Ritchie could face up to 10 years in prison and $150,000 in fines.
Governor Chris Christie continued to advance a reform agenda for public education throughout the State of New Jersey. Speaking with families and community leaders at a town hall in Old Bridge, Governor Chris Christie unveiled the first pieces of a far-reaching reform agenda to improve New Jersey public schools by challenging the status quo and transforming a system that has fallen short of the needs of parents and children.
Despite some of the highest levels of education spending in the entire nation, New Jersey’s public schools continue to confront a critical achievement gap that shortchanges our children. For example, the achievement gap between wealthy and low-income 8th graders in math is nearly the same as it was 19 years ago; the gap between at-risk 4th graders and those not at-risk has remained nearly unchanged over the past 13 years. Likewise, New Jersey’s education system has failed to prepare vast numbers of students with the critical skills required to be competitive in college or the workforce. In 2009, nearly 30 percent of all 8th graders statewide lacked basic math skills.
Governor Christie’s Reform Agenda will bring necessary and long overdue reform to the public education system by making teacher effectiveness and student achievement the driving forces behind public policies and practices. The first step toward innovation in the public school system means focusing on accountability.
Governor Christie is proposing reforms to reward innovative and effective teaching, expand opportunities for New Jersey’s best teachers, and put student achievement at the center of educator evaluations. Governor Christie is challenging the education establishment with reforms to:
- Promote Innovative and Effective Teaching by Valuing Student Achievement Over Seniority.
- Demand Accountability and Results for New Jersey’s Children with Data-Supported Evaluations.
- Expand Opportunities for Great Teachers to Succeed.
- Ensure Our Children Have Well-Prepared Teachers.
Governor Christie also recognizes that through empowerment, parents can becomes better advocates for quality education for their children and increase accountability in our schools. The Governor’s reforms will work to:
- Engage Families in Their Children’s Education with Improved Access to Information.
- Improve Outreach and Communications Efforts to Parents and Families.
After leaving Sept. 4., the crew was tasked with enforcing fisheries and safety regulations, marine mammal protection laws and coordinating the efforts of several surface and air assets conducting the same mission. The crew of the Dependable patrolled the waters of Cape Cod Bay, Mass., the Gulf of Maine and Buzzards Bay, Mass. They conducted 85 fisheries boardings and issued 24 safety violations. Additionally, the crew assisted the fishing vessel White Water II, which was disabled 80 nautical miles south of Long Island, N.Y. The crew of the Dependable safely towed the 63-foot vessel to New Bedford, Mass. Throughout the patrol, the crew constantly enhanced thier readiness through drills and training exercises. They visited Portland, Maine and Boston for port calls during the patrol.
The Coast Guard Cutter Dependable is a 210′ Medium Endurance Cutter with 75 crewmembers.
New Jerseyans feel that NJN television provides a valuable service and government should support it in some way. But the latest Monmouth University/Gannett New Jersey Poll also finds the public is divided on plans to sell the state-owned broadcaster.
NJN TV and radio have been operated by the New Jersey Public Broadcasting Authority for 40 years. Governor Christie has proposed selling or transferring the station’s assets by the end of this year. A legislative task force has been holding hearings on this proposal.
Nearly 6-in-10 (58%) state residents approve of using public funds to help run NJN, compared to 36% who oppose this. The number who currently support state funding is slightly lower than the 62% who felt this way in 1999, but higher than the 51% who said the same in 1994.
Although most residents support state funding of NJN, the public is divided on the proposed sale or transfer – 39% approve of the move and 34% disapprove, with another 26% having no opinion. Among residents who have watched NJN at least once in the past month, opinion on the sale stands at 40% approve to 39% disapprove. But among the smaller number of NJN viewers who are already aware of the proposed sale – representing about 1-in-10 New Jersey residents – just 36% approve of the sale, compared to 55% who disapprove.
The public is unsure whether the sale or transfer of NJN would affect its coverage of New Jersey topics and issues. One-in-five (19%) say a sale would actually improve the station’s coverage of the state and a similar number (18%) expect this coverage would get worse. However, most feel that either coverage of the state would not change much (38%) or they don’t know how it would change (25%) if the station is no longer owned by state government.
Criminal Mischief incidents involving spray paint, malicious damage and even minor arson incidents have increased at the Mulligan Field Sports Complex in the Villas Section of Lower Township over the last several months.
As a result of the recent criminal mischief at the Mulligan Field, Lower Township Police Chief Edward Donohue has issued a Zero Tolerance Policy to his Officers for any juveniles found on the Township property after the hours established in the Township’s local ordinance regarding curfew violations.
The Lower Township Police Department would like to remind juveniles and their parents/guardians of the curfew regulations in Lower Township.
It shall be unlawful for a juvenile to be on any public street or any public place in the Township of Lower between the following hours:
- Juveniles under 14 years of age 10 pm to 6 am
- Juveniles ages 14 through 17 between September 15th and May 15th, 11 pm to 6 am and
- Between May 15th and September 15th, 12 midnight to 6 am
The juvenile and their parent and/or guardian are both subject to a written warning for the first offense.
If there is a subsequent violation by the juvenile within one year of the initial warning, a formal complaint summons will be signed against the juvenile and their parent and/or guardian.
Any person convicted of a violation of this local ordinance shall be subject to the performance of not more than 180 days of community service or a fine of not more than $1,000 or both. If both the juvenile and the juvenile’s parent or guardian are convicted of a violation of this chapter, they shall be required to perform community service together.
The Lower Township Police Department would also like to remind residents that the Mulligan Field Sports Complex is closed after 9 pm and no one should be on the property after 9 pm.
Any residents observing suspicious and/or criminal activity at the Mulligan Field Sports Complex are asked to call the Lower Township Police Department at 886-2711 for nonemergencies and 9-1-1 for emergent matters.
On September 23rd, at approximately 2:30 p.m. the Lower Township Police Department received an anonymous report of large Marijuana Plants being grown in the backyard of a residence in the 100 block of Spruce Avenue in the township’s Villas Section.
S/O Michael Kennedy responded to the area. The officer was then able to take up a position where he could view the back yard of the home in question and was able to observe in plain view, four (4) large Marijuana Plants, each approximately four (4) feet tall, being grown in separate buckets.
After further investigation, the homeowner, identified as Dennis J. Basse, age 58, of the 100 Block of Spruce Avenue, Villas, New Jersey, was arrested and transported to Lower Township Police Department where he was charged with growing and/or manufacturing Marijuana, being a 3rd Degree crime.
Basse was released on a summons with a court date.
The Lower Township Police Department confiscated the Marijuana Plants and turned them over to the Cape May County Prosecutor’s Office Evidence Unit.
On Monday, September 27th, at approximately 9 p.m. the Lower Township Police Department received a report of a forced entry and burglary from a homeowner in the 400 block of Village Road in the township’s Villas Section.
The homeowner reported forced entry through a window and reported that approximately $6,000 worth of various pieces of jewelry was stolen from the home.
Following an investigation into the burglary, Lower Township Police Officers arrested a female suspect several hours later, identified as Kimberly A. Grossman, age 20, of Lower Township and charged her with burglary and theft.
Detectives are still investigating the incident and attempting to recover the stolen jewelry.
On September 22nd, at approximate 4:20 p.m. Lower Township Police Department received a 9-1-1 Call reporting that a 17 year old male had been assaulted in the 200 block of Beechwood Avenue in the township’s Villas Section, by a group of subjects who had pulled up to the victim in a motor vehicle, before assaulting him.
Further investigation led to the arrest of the following subjects who were found in a motor vehicle stop by Lower Township Police:
Matthew J. Deolibeira, age 29 of the 500 Block of Seashore Road in the Erma Section of Lower Township. Deolibeira was charged with Aggravated Assault and Use of a Juvenile in the Course of a Crime, this being a 1st Degree crime.
Carl R. Stewart, age 18 of the 500 Block of Seashore Road in the Erma Section of Lower Township was charged with Aggravated Assault and Use of a Juvenile in the Course of a Crime, this being a 1st Degree crime.
The 17 year old male juvenile from Lower Township was charged with one (1) count of Aggravated Assault and an 17 year old female juvenile from Lower Township was charged with Conspiracy to Commit Aggravated Assault.
The 17 year old male victim was treated on scene by Lower Township Rescue Squad and then transported to Cape Regional Medical Center by his mother.