We have noted an increase in distraction burglaries in our area. What is a distraction burglary? It’s when a perpetrator seeks to draw a resident out of their house on a pretext. While the resident is being “distracted”, an accomplice enters the home and takes valuables such as money and jewelry. Another common practice is when an accomplice enters the home from a back or side door while the resident is “distracted” at the front door. Perpetrators use disguises such as utility worker, sales person, contractor, surveyor or a disabled motorist.
What can you do to protect yourself?
1) Keep all exterior doors secure.
2) Ask for identification to be shown through a window, this can be faked, so contact the utility company to verify the person’s identity. Do not call a number provided by the unknown person.
3) Do not leave jewelry, a wallet or purse out in the open, such as on a front entry table.
4) Keep valuables in a safe.
5) Know the law. Mansfield Township ordinance prohibits door to door soliciting without a permit issued by the Township. If someone who is soliciting won’t display their permit or if you are unsure if a permit is legitimate, don’t hesitate to contact police to investigate the matter. The non-emergency number for police dispatch is 609-723-8300.
This is a reminder that a curfew was established under Chapter 28 of the Mansfield Township Code.
The curfew applies to any person under 18 years old and is in effect on:
- October 28th, 29th, & 30th from 8:30 p.m. until 6:00 a.m. the next day.
- October 31st from 9:00 p.m. until 6:00 a.m. the next day.
On Wednesday, October 19th, 2016 a raccoon attacked a small child along Axe Factory Road. The child was playing in the yard when the animal attacked without provocation. The child’s father fended off the raccoon with a pocket knife, killing it. The child was taken to the hospital for treatment and is recuperating at home. The township’s animal control officer submitted the raccoon to the lab for testing, which revealed it had rabies. Residents are asked to report any wild animals that are not behaving normally or exhibit aggressive behavior. Anyone who believes they had contact with a rabid animal should seek out medical testing and treatment.
On October 17, 2016, Marius Sugar, 29 years old of Queens, NY, and Radu Balazs, 33 years old of Queens, NY, were charged in relation to an incident from August 13, 2016, involving fraudulent ATM withdrawals and an ATM skimming device being placed on the ATM at the Columbus branch of Investors Bank in Homestead Plaza II. The two suspects were identified using surveillance footage taken from the ATM with assistance from the East Brunswick Police Department and the New York City Police Department. Both suspects were charged with Unauthorized Use of a Scanning Device, Credit Card Fraud, Identity Theft and Computer Criminal Activity. Both suspects are being held at the Vernon C. Bain Correctional Facility in New York on separate charges out of New York City and face extradition on $50,000 warrants. The outcome of this investigation would not have been possible without the efforts of the Ptl. K. Allen, the investigating officer on the case.
On Friday, August 26, 2016, the Mansfield Township Police, along with security personnel from Investors Bank, began investigating a case of an installed skimming device on an outside ATM of the Investors Bank, located in Homestead Plaza II at 23201 Columbus Road. With the cooperation of Investors Bank, it was determined that the device was installed on Sunday, August 14, 2016 and removed by the perpetrator on Tuesday, August 16, 2016. Customers who used the ATM at that branch during the time period noted are asked to monitor their bank statements and report fraudulent ATM withdrawals to their bank and police.
The following information from the New Jersey Division of Banking and Insurance is provided to assist the public in protecting themselves from falling victim to car skimming devices.
Mansfield Township Police Department will be cracking down on drunk drivers as part of the 2016 Labor Day “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign. We have been awarded a grant by the New Jersey Division of Highway Traffic Safety for increased DWI enforcement beginning today through September 5th. Holiday weekends bring a surge in drunk driving. Take action toward ensuring a safe Labor Day for you and those you care about.
Mansfield Township Police Department offers the following advice:
- If you plan to drink, designate a driver, someone who will not drink alcohol, before going out.
- Take mass transit, a taxi or ask a sober friend to drive you home.
- Spend the night where the activity is held.
- Always buckle up, every ride, regardless of your seating position in the vehicle. It’s your best defense against an impaired driver.
- If you’re intoxicated and traveling on foot, the safest way to get home is to take a cab or have a sober friend or family member drive you to your doorstep.
Need a sober designated driver? Find one with the SaferRide app, designed to make your ride home safe and easy. #DriveSober http://ow.ly/11jw300nxnZ
MOUNT HOLLY, N.J. – Burlington County Prosecutor Robert D. Bernardi and Mansfield Township Police Chief Ronald Mulhall announced today that a Belleville resident has been charged with fatally shooting a man earlier this year in Mansfield Township.
Quinnizel J. Clark, 34, of the 100 block of Washington Avenue in Belleville, was charged with one count of Murder and one count of Possession of a Firearm for an Unlawful Purpose for the death of James Dewyer, 68, on January 3.
The victim was found shot to death inside of his parked vehicle on January 3 just off of Monica Court. Mansfield Township police officers were called to the area at approximately 4:15 p.m. on that date to check on an unresponsive person sitting in the vehicle’s front passenger seat.
The investigation revealed that Clark and Dewyer, who were acquaintances, had spent time together earlier in the day. Clark then drove Dewyer’s car to the location where it was discovered and shot him multiple times before leaving on foot.
Clark was taken into custody on Friday July 8 in Maple Shade by the Burlington County Sheriff’s Department Fugitive Unit. He is presently in Burlington County Jail on $500,000 full bail set by the Hon. Christopher J. Garrenger, J.S.C. The case will be referred to a Burlington County Grand Jury for possible indictment.
The victim had a last known legal address of Linden Road in Burlington Township, but had not resided at that location for a few years. He frequently changed residences, sometimes living in area motels.
An autopsy performed by Burlington County Medical Examiner Dr. Ian Hood concluded the manner of death was homicide and the cause was a result of multiple gunshot wounds.
The case was investigated by the Mansfield Township Police Department and detectives from the Burlington County Prosecutor’s Office Major Crimes Unit, Crime Scene Unit and High-Tech Crimes Unit.
This year marks the 33rd Annual New Jersey Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics. This event leads up to the Special Olympics New Jersey Summer Games Opening Ceremony at The College of New Jersey this evening. Members of the Mansfield Township Police Department offered their support for the SONJ Summer Games by carrying the torch through the township along State Highway Route 130 this morning. Our members received the torch from Bordentown Township Police Department and passed it to officers from the Florence Township Police Department. We were honored to participate and wish the best for all of the athletes and their families who are at the Summer Games this weekend!
You can make a donation in support of the 2016 Law Enforcement Torch Run and Special Olympics New Jersey HERE.
Our agency has noted a recent increase of township residents being targeted by scammers posing as representatives of the Internal Revenue Service.
The following guidance was provided by the IRS in a Consumer Alert published earlier this year:
Here are some things the scammers often do but the IRS will not do. Any one of these five things is a tell-tale sign of a scam.
The IRS will never:
- Call to demand immediate payment over the phone, nor will the agency call about taxes owed without first having mailed you several bills.
- Call or email you to verify your identity by asking for personal and financial information.
- Demand that you pay taxes without giving you the opportunity to question or appeal the amount they say you owe.
- Require you to use a specific payment method for your taxes, such as a prepaid debit card.
- Ask for credit or debit card numbers over the phone or e-mail.
- Threaten to immediately bring in local police or other law-enforcement groups to have you arrested for not paying.
If you don’t owe taxes, or have no reason to think that you do:
- If you get a phone call from someone claiming to be from the IRS and asking for money or to verify your identity, here’s what you should do:
- Do not give out any information. Hang up immediately.
- Contact TIGTA to report the call. Use their “IRS Impersonation Scam Reporting” web page. You can also call 800-366-4484.
- Report it to the Federal Trade Commission. Use the “FTC Complaint Assistant” on FTC.gov. Please add “IRS Telephone Scam” in the notes.
If you know you owe, or think you may owe tax:
- Call the IRS at 800-829-1040. IRS workers can help you.