Monday, April 15, 2024
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Wipe the Slate Clean: Morris County Bar Association’s Free Expungement Clinic

MORRIS COUNTY — The Criminal Practice Committee of the Morris County Bar Association is running a free expungement clinic from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on Thursday, May 2 at Calvary Baptist Church, 10 Martin Luther King Avenue, Morristown.

Volunteer attorneys through the Morris County Bar Association will meet with members of the public who seek to have their records expunged. Assistant Prosecutors will volunteer as well to assist in the legal process. The Morris County Bar Foundation will provide free lunch to members of the public who come to the clinic. Staff from the Sheriff’s Office will provide information on various social service programs.

The Clinic will also provide information about:

  • Free Narcan
  • Substance Use Services
  • Mental Health Services
  • Social Services Benefits
  • Re-Entry Services

4.8 Earthquake Hits Local Morris County Area

MORRIS COUNTY — The U.S. Geological Survey reported the quake at 10:23 a.m. had a magnitude of 4.8 and was centered about 7 kilometers, or 4.3 miles, north of the Whitehouse Station section of Readington Township in Hunterdon County.

Morris County Sheriff James Gannon said no injuries were reported at the county courthouse. The Morristown structure, which dates to 1827, was being evaluated for damage, he said.

The quake could be felt up and down the East Coast, including wide areas of New Jersey, New York City and Long Island, and parts of Delaware, Maryland and Connecticut. U.S.G.S. figures indicated the quake might have been felt by more than 42 million people.

“Our region just experienced an earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 4.7, with an epicenter near Readington in Hunterdon County. We have activated our State Emergency Operations Center. Please do not call 911 unless you have an actual emergency,” Gov. Phil Murphy said on social media.

Residential Burglary Rocks Brook Court: $3,000-$4,000 Worth of Items Stolen

PARSIPPANY — On April 1, 2024, at 8:42 p.m., Parsippany-Troy Hills Police were called to a residence on Brook Court following a reported burglary.

The victims had been away from home between 2:30 p.m. and 8:45 p.m. During this time, unknown perpetrator(s) entered through a rear sliding glass door and stole jewelry and cash valued at approximately $3,000-$4,000.

The Morris County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigation Section arrived to process the scene. While investigating, officers noticed a suspicious silver SUV parked on Brook Court between 7:12 p.m. and 7:42 p.m., though its connection to the burglary remains unclear. No suspect description has been provided, and the incident is currently under investigation.

Anyone with information is urged to contact the Parsippany Police Department’s Investigative Branch at (973) 263-4300.

Thieves Strike Again: Victory Mart Falls Victim to Burglary

PARSIPPANY — At 4:35 a.m. on April 1, 2024, authorities responded to a reported burglary at the Victory Mart, situated at 1933 Route 46 East. Upon arrival, officers discovered that unidentified individuals had gained entry by smashing the front glass door.

The perpetrators stole lottery scratch-off tickets, and cash registers, and also damaged the lottery machine. Initial investigations revealed that four unknown males arrived in a white 4-door Audi sedan around 12:31 a.m.

Two males initially broke the front door, then returned at 12:33 a.m. to commit the burglary. These same individuals were linked to a burglary at the Village Convenience Store at 12:45 a.m. Parsippany Police Detectives, alongside the Morris County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigative Section, arrived to process and investigate the scene.

The incident remains under investigation, and anyone with information is urged to contact the Parsippany Police Department’s Investigative Branch at (973) 263-4300.

Crime Alert: Thieves Smash Their Way into Village Convenience Store

PARSIPPANY — On April 1, 2024, at 12:45 a.m., authorities responded to a reported burglary at the Village Convenience Store, located at 109 Route 46 East.

Upon arrival, the store owner informed officers that unidentified individuals had broken in by smashing the front glass door.

The perpetrators stole around 40 to 50 cases of lottery scratch-off tickets, $100 cash from the register, and an electronic payment transaction computer. Initial investigations revealed that four unknown males arrived in a white 4-door Audi sedan with out-of-state plates at approximately 12:43 a.m.

Three males got out of the vehicle, wearing black clothing, face masks, and white gloves, and used a rock to break into the store. The same individuals were identified as the suspects in a burglary at the Victory Mart at 12:31 a.m.

Parsippany Police Detectives, along with the Morris County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigative Section, were called to process and investigate the scene. The incident is currently under investigation, and anyone with information is urged to contact the Parsippany Police Department’s Investigative Branch at (973) 263-4300.

Swim Instructor Allegedly Under Influence, Charged with Endangering

MORRIS COUNTY — Police reported that last month, a swim instructor from Denville was charged with endangering another person after allegedly being under the influence while instructing.

On March 25, authorities were called to KimSwims at 424 Route 46 West, where the instructor, identified as Kyle Cooper, 36, Denville, was suspected of being under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs while teaching young children.

Cooper was released pending a court appearance following an investigation.

A criminal complaint is merely an accusation. Despite this accusation, this Defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Davida Padi Participates in the Study Abroad Program at The University of Scranton

PARSIPPANY — Davida F. Padi was among the 96 University of Scranton students who studied abroad during Intersession 2024.

Padi, majoring in social media strategies at Scranton, participated in the American Institute for Foreign Studies in Stellenbosch, South Africa.

The University of Scranton is a Jesuit university located in Northeastern Pennsylvania.

Burglary at Gene’s Deli: Suspects Smash Front Door, Steal Cash and Goods

PARSIPPANY — Parsippany Police officers were called to Gene’s Deli, situated at 87 North Beverwyck Road, following a reported burglary.

Upon their initial examination, it was established that four unidentified male individuals arrived in a white sedan around 1:26 a.m.

They forcibly entered the store by breaking the front glass door and proceeded to steal various lottery scratch-off tickets, vape products, and approximately $200 in cash.

The Morris County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigative Section arrived to process the scene. The matter is currently being investigated. Individuals with any relevant information are urged to contact the Parsippany Police Department’s Investigative Branch at (973) 263-4300.

Parsippany Woman Arrested in Mountain Lakes for Unpaid Traffic Violations

MOUNTAIN LAKES — On Thursday, March 28, Patrolman Grady conducted a motor vehicle stop on Route 46 West that led to the arrest of the passenger, 35-year-old Erin Allred of Parsippany, for active traffic warrants issued by Glen Ridge.

Ms. Allred was arrested and released pending a mandatory court date.

A criminal complaint is merely an accusation. Despite this accusation, this Defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Mountain Lakes Police Arrest Parsippany Resident for DWI After Traffic Stop

MOUNTAIN LAKES — On Wednesday, March 13, 2024, at approximately 12:23 a.m., Mountain Lakes Patrolman Bryan conducted a motor vehicle stop that led to the arrest of the driver, 42-year-old Trevor Riker of Parsippany, for driving while intoxicated.

Mr. Riker was issued motor vehicle summonses for driving while intoxicated, reckless driving, careless driving, and tailgating.

Mr. Riker was released pending a mandatory court date.

A criminal complaint is merely an accusation. Despite this accusation, this Defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Letter to the Editor: Taking Action Against Malaria: A Call to Global Health Advocacy

Dear Editor:

Growing up in India, malaria was a prevalent topic in many conversations. From hearing about its impact on communities to witnessing public health campaigns aimed at prevention, malaria became ingrained in my consciousness from an early age. These experiences ignited a passion within me to contribute to global health solutions, particularly in combating malaria.

As a child, I vividly remember my mother’s constant reminder to come home and check me for mosquito bites. It was a simple precaution, but it underscored the seriousness of malaria and the importance of early detection and treatment. Looking back now, I realize how unaware I was of the severity of malaria. Privileged to have access to resources for treatment, I did not fully grasp the impact it had on those less fortunate.

Despite growing up with an awareness of malaria, it was easy to dismiss it as just another part of life. However, reflecting on those childhood experiences, I recognize the unfairness of having to worry about such a deadly disease at such a young age. It became second nature for us to be vigilant about mosquito bites, a reality that should not burden children.

My personal journey has instilled in me a deep commitment to combating malaria and improving global health outcomes. That is why I am inspired by the work of organizations like United To Beat Malaria. United to Beat Malaria, a global grassroots campaign of the UN Foundation, brings together a diverse set of partners, influencers, and supporters across the U.S. and around the world to take urgent action to end malaria. Their dedication to raising awareness, advocating for prevention, and providing resources to communities aligns with my passion for making a difference.

Recently, I joined grassroots advocates from across the country to meet with Members of Congress to urge support for life-saving malaria programs. In my meetings with Senator Bob Menendez, Senator Cory Booker, and Representative Mikie Sherrill, I was reminded of the power of the individual to influence policy. As World Malaria Day approaches on April 25th, I encourage those with a passion for global health to add their voices in support of ending one of history’s most deadly diseases. Text message the word CHAMPION to 30644 to join us in this global effort!

Krutika Patel
Parsippany


Let’s Clean Up Parsippany!

PARSIPPANY — Earth Day Clean Up, organized by Parsippany resident Noah Lustig, will be held on Saturday, April 20 from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 Noon. Let’s Clean Up Parsippany! Join us in this township-wide event.

Registration is required by clicking here.   An email with additional details will be sent.

Several locations throughout Parsippany will be targeted to be cleaned up of debris and garbage including the Jersey City/Boonton Reservoir.

Check-in will be at the Smith Field C Parking Lot at 9:00 a.m.

Volunteers will be shuttled to various locations by Township Buses.

  • Heavy-duty gloves are recommended.
  • Bags and safety vests (as needed) will be provided.

Additional questions or need more info? Please get in touch with Parsippany Recreation at recreation@parsippany.net.

Morris County Sheriff’s Office Attains Eighth Reaccreditation Award

MORRIS COUNTY — Sheriff James M. Gannon and the Morris County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO) Bureau of Law Enforcement were proud to receive their eighth accreditation certification from the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies (CALEA) at a recent ceremony in Montgomery, Alabama.

“I am so very thankful to all the personnel of the Bureau of Law Enforcement who, day in and day out, deliver the level of professionalism expected of the people of Morris County and outlined in the CALEA accreditation process. I especially want to thank our accreditation team of Detective Lieutenant Tracy Medwin, Sergeant Travis Somerville, Corporal Laura Bertelli, and Sheriff’s Officer Ashley Craig for their exceptional work in attaining this very notable accomplishment,” said Sheriff Gannon.

Accreditation by the CALEA is a demanding process that measures a law enforcement agency’s compliance with the most advanced standards on policy, procedures, operations, and administration and support services. CALEA was created in 1979 as a credentialing authority through the joint efforts of law enforcement’s major executive associations and is considered the top international standard in public safety evaluation.

In October 2023, CALEA Assessor Dennis Nelson completed a four-day onsite reaccreditation assessment, noting in his final report how committed Sheriff Gannon and the entire MCSO are to the accreditation process.

“All officers interviewed were knowledgeable and engaged in their job function, which translated into accreditation being embedded in the culture of the Office,” said Assessor Nelson, adding, “This is an important aspect to the Sheriff, and it shows throughout the agency in that everyone’s performance is as natural as breathing.”

The onsite review was the final step in the process of achieving reaccreditation and also included a review of policies, practices, and processes.

Sheriff Gannon expressed his gratitude for the level of detail and thoroughness of the CALEA review, stating how important it is for a law enforcement agency to have such a review by an independent, outside source. Accreditation becomes instilled in the agency’s DNA through years of undergoing the process, said Gannon.

“I am pleased to learn that the Morris County Sheriff’s Office has again achieved recertification by the prestigious CALEA. I do not doubt that the MCSO would satisfy all the applicable standards for accreditation, knowing that the leadership staff under Sheriff Gannon has developed a model of good and responsive law enforcement for all their operations,” said Morris County Prosecutor Robert Carroll.

The MCSO adheres to 461 policy standards ensuring the agency operates within best practices. Reported areas of strength include the delivery of services to the public and the recruitment and retention of officers. The MCSO is a triple crown award recipient accredited in corrections standards set by the American Correctional Association (ACA), correctional healthcare standards under the National Commission on Correctional Healthcare (NCCHC), and law enforcement accreditation through the CALEA. The MCSO is also the first agency in New Jersey to be certified by the Highlands Forensic Investigations & Consulting as a top agency to meet industry standards in crime scene investigation.

“On behalf of the Morris County Chiefs Association, and all Morris County Chiefs of Police, congratulations to Sheriff Gannon and the MCSO for achieving this milestone of their eighth consecutive CALEA reaccreditation. Having been an accreditation manager, I know the effort that goes into achieving the accreditation status. The Morris County Chiefs of Police value our partnership with the MCSO and the invaluable services they provide,” said Morris Plains Police Chief Michael Koroski, president of the Chiefs Association.

Sheriff Gannon continues to invite scrutiny of his organization by gold-standard organizations and is consistently seeking input from municipal, county, state, and federal partners. The sheriff meets regularly, including one-on-one, with all 328 members of his staff to gauge the agency’s performance and to improve processes.

The sheriff also invites the citizens of Morris County to report on what the MSCO does right and where there are opportunities for improvement in a mutual effort to improve outcomes for the community. Click here for more information and to provide feedback.

Seeking: Female Volunteers and Sponsors for Morris Habitat’s ‘Women Build’ Initiative

MORRIS COUNTY — Ladies, are you 18 or older and ready, willing, and able to build houses from the ground up? Then Morris Habitat for Humanity, the major builder and advocate for affordable housing in the state, is looking for you to participate in this year’s “Women Build” benefit, to be held from Monday, May 6 through Friday, May 17.

The volunteers affiliated with the Morris non-profit serve as the heart and soul of the organization, dedicating numerous hours of assistance and support to facilitate families’ journey towards homeownership. The program’s sustainability is attributed to the contributions of these volunteers, who generously offer their time and expertise across all facets of the organization.

To register to volunteer, click here.

Parsippany-Troy Hills Council Meeting Scheduled for April 2

PARSIPPANY — The Parsippany-Troy Hills Township Council has scheduled a meeting for Tuesday, April 2, at 7:00 p.m. The meeting will occur in the Council Chambers at 1001 Parsippany Boulevard within the Parsippany Municipal Building.

Formal action may or may not be taken.

Any individual who is a qualified disabled person under the Americans with Disabilities Act may request auxiliary aids such as a sign interpreter or a tape recorder to be used for the meeting. Auxiliary aids must be requested at least 72 hours before the meeting date. Please call (973) 263-4351 to request an auxiliary aid.

Click here for a copy of the agenda.

Click here for the 2024 calendar.

Mayor James Barberio
Council President Paul Carifi, Jr.
Council Vice President Frank Neglia
Councilman Justin Musella
Councilman Matt McGrath
Councilwoman Judy Hernandez

Rite Aid Lake Hiawatha Pharmacy Joins List of Closures Across New Jersey

PARSIPPANY — The Rite Aid pharmacy located in Lake Hiawatha is set to close its doors soon. This decision comes as a result of various factors, including business strategy, lease and rent considerations, local business conditions, and store performance, as stated by a company spokesperson. According to a store employee, the pharmacy, located at 480 North Beverwyck Road, Lake Hiawatha, will conclude its operations on April 26, with the remaining store sections closing in early May.

With over 2,000 locations across 17 states, Rite Aid announced anticipated fiscal losses for 2024, expected to range between approximately $650 million and $680 million. A company spokesperson emphasized the regular review of locations to align with customer needs and overall business goals.

A settlement has been reached between Rite Aid and its lenders, the U.S. Department of Justice, and drug supplier McKesson Corp, facilitating the completion of Rite Aid’s bankruptcy case by late April, as per a company lawyer. This settlement, unrelated to ongoing lawsuits over opioid medications, addresses the pharmacy chain’s high debt and strategic restructuring efforts initiated since filing for bankruptcy in October 2023.

Apart from Lake Hiawatha, several other Rite Aid stores in New Jersey have either closed recently or are scheduled to close soon, including locations in Morristown, Bayonne, Haddon Township, Logan Township, Newark, and Newton. Nationwide, a total of 77 additional stores are slated for closure, bringing the total count of planned closures since last October to 431.

Customers seeking to transfer prescriptions before the closure can reach out to Greenhill Pharmacy at (973) 887-9444, located at 64 Parsippany Road, or Lakeshore Pharmacy at (862) 701-5808, situated at 299 Parsippany Road. Both pharmacies are locally owned and operated. Alternatively, Rite Aid will automatically transfer prescriptions to a nearby location for customers who do not opt for a transfer.

Troy Hills Shopping Center Vacancies Reflect Nationwide Retail Downturn

PARSIPPANY — In the last half-year, the Troy Hills Shopping Center has seen a series of retail closures, totaling nearly 74,000 square feet of vacated space. The sequence began with the Dollar Store, followed by Esporta, iStore by St Moritz, Sport Clips, and most recently Berry Bowls. Additionally, a former Subway outlet had already been vacant before these closures.

The sole announced replacement is Phoenix Salon Suites, set to occupy 6,801 square feet within the former Dollar Store space.

The demise of traditional retail has been inexorably linked to the rise of online shopping. As e-commerce platforms burgeoned, offering convenience, extensive variety, and often lower prices, brick-and-mortar stores faced mounting challenges to stay afloat.

Consumers, drawn by the ease of browsing and purchasing from the comfort of their homes, began to shift their shopping habits online. The ability to compare prices, read reviews, and access a vast array of products with just a few clicks proved irresistible.

The respective areas occupied by the closed businesses were: Sports Clips (1,045 sq ft), Berry Bowls (900 sq ft), Former Subway (1,748 sq ft), iStore (1,998 sq ft), and Esporta (61,489 sq ft), totaling over 67,000 square feet.

For context, the total leasable space in the Troy Hills Shopping Center amounts to 211,000 square feet. Among its major tenants are Target, Michaels, Petco, Applebees, McDonalds, Wells Fargo, and Panera Bread.

For retailers, the overhead costs of maintaining physical stores, coupled with the need to adapt to evolving consumer preferences and technological advancements, posed significant hurdles. Many struggled to compete with the agility and cost-effectiveness of online counterparts.

The U-Haul truck was stationed in front of Berry Bowls, clearing out the establishment.

While some traditional retailers managed to pivot successfully by integrating online channels into their business models, others faltered, succumbing to the relentless march of digital disruption. As a result, countless iconic brands shuttered their doors, marking the end of an era in retail history.

Empowering Minds: Conference Aims to Improve Quality of Life

MORRIS COUNTY — In a world where the prevalence of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease is on the rise, education, and awareness play pivotal roles in fostering understanding and support. Join Arden Courts ProMedica Memory Care West Orange, Whippany, and Wayne as we learn from three experts on navigating these complex conditions during our POWER of the Mind conference.

The keynote speaker, Dr. Theresa Redling, DO, FACP, Chief of the Division of Geriatric Health and Disease Management at Cooperman Barnabas Medical Center, will provide valuable perspectives. Additionally, attendees will benefit from the expertise of Rachael Wonderlin, MS, Dementia & Senior Living Consultant at Dementia By Day, and Eric Goldberg, CELA, Owner & Managing Partner at NJ Elder Law Center, Goldberg Law Group, a three-time author published by Johns Hopkins Press.

Through education and heightened awareness, the aim is to cultivate a more supportive environment for individuals with dementia and Alzheimer’s, enriching their lives and those of their loved ones. Prospective attendees are encouraged to reserve their spot promptly as space is limited. The first 25 registrants will receive a signed copy of Rachael Wonderlin’s book.

Participating Vendors include:
•Care Connect
•Care Patrol
•Coldwell Banker – Morristown
•Dementia By Day
•HomeWatch Caregivers
•NJ Elder Law Center Goldberg Law Group
•Patient Care
•Peace Aging
•Ramapo Behavioral Health/Christian Health
•RetireMD
•Right At Home of Essex County
•RJW Barnabas Health
•Simpler Life
•Summit Psychological Services
•Suncrest Hospice
•The Alzheimer’s Association New Jersey Chapter
•The Cognitive and Research Center of New Jersey

Staffed by specially trained caregivers, Arden Courts compassionately cares for individuals diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias. Arden Courts communities are purpose-built and specialized to accommodate the unique needs of its residents.

They offer programs that serve all levels of memory care, from early stages through end-
of-life care.

To learn more click here.

Skyward Delight: Liquid Church Drops 75,000 Easter Eggs for Spectacular Hunt

PARSIPPANY — On Easter Weekend, Liquid Church, one of New Jersey’s fastest-growing Christian churches, hosted a helicopter Easter Egg Drop event at its Parsippany campus. They also hosted similar Easter Egg Drop at Princeton, Wayne, and Mountainside.

Liquid Church hosted a helicopter Easter Egg Drop where 75,000 colorful Easter eggs filled with candy and prizes were shared with kids ages 12 and under.
The Easter basket will be their ticket to enter the free Easter Egg Drop activity. 

The community was invited to attend the free Easter Egg Drop, where 75,000 colorful Easter eggs filled with candy and prizes and shared with kids ages 12 and under. 

The fun began Saturday with the first drops at its Parsippany campus, where young children hunted down the eggs following services. Two drops were on Saturday, with three drops on Sunday.

To participate in the Easter Egg Drop, each child ages 12 and under received an Easter egg basket after attending Liquid Family. The Easter basket will be their ticket to enter the free Easter Egg Drop activity. 

Liquid Church added a colorful extra attraction to its Easter weekend services by hiring helicopters to drop a total of 75,000 Easter eggs
Clouds of Joy: Liquid Church Sets Free 75,000 Easter Eggs for Sky-Filled Hunt
Children of all ages had the opportunity to hang out with the Easter Bunny.
The helicopter dumped thousands of Easter eggs filled with candy and prizes, which were shared with kids ages 12 and under.

Rep. Sherrill Launches Sixth Annual Congressional Art Competition

MORRIS COUNTY — Representative Mikie Sherrill (NJ-11) launched her sixth annual Congressional Art Competition for NJ-11 students. The competition offers high school students a chance to showcase their creativity and artistic expression. 

“I am excited to once again launch the Congressional Art Competition! Each year, I am so impressed by the creativity, passion, and talent of our high school students. The Congressional Art Competition provides a unique opportunity to celebrate young artists in our community,” said Rep. Sherrill. “I strongly encourage each high school to participate and I look forward to seeing all of the artwork!”  

Each spring, the Congressional Institute sponsors a nationwide high school visual art competition to recognize and encourage artistic talent in the nation and in each congressional district. Since the competition began in 1982, more than 650,000 high school students have participated. Students submit entries to their representative’s office, and panels of judges select the winning entries. The winner’s artwork will be displayed alongside winners from across the nation for one year in the U.S. Capitol.

Artwork submitted for NJ-11’s competition will be displayed at an art show and reception at Montclair State University, where this year’s winners will be announced. Art teachers interested in submitting their students’ work can reach out to georgia.turvey@mail.house.gov for additional information. 

Due to limitations of gallery space, NJ-11 high schools will be able to select ONE piece of artwork to represent their school and their selected art must be dropped off to Rep. Sherrill’s District Office. The decision on which artwork is submitted by each school is at the sole discretion of the school, and no entries outside of that process can be included in the competition.  

The deadline for schools to let Rep. Sherrill’s office know which piece they are submitting is Friday, April 12. Artwork must be submitted through the student’s school.

Rep. Sherrill’s office is located at 375 South Livingston Avenue, Suite 201, Livingston NJ 07039. To view more information about the Congressional Art Competition, click here.

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