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Manchester Township Police
1 Colonial Drive
Manchester, NJ 08759-3898

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732-657-6111 TDD

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732-657-2009 TDD

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Manchester Police News

HazMat Situation at High School Safely Resolved

On April 20, 2015 at 1:21 p.m., the Manchester Township Police was dispatched to the Manchester Township High School on Colonial Drive for the report of a HazMat spill in the science lab. Officers responded and evacuated the science wing.

HazMatThe school administration advised that a student dropped a 500 mL jar of chemicals that shattered on the floor. The five chemicals were identified as Manganese (11) Sulfate Solution, Silver Nitrate Solution 0.2 m, Lead Nitrate Solution, Nickel Sulfate, and Cobalt Chloride Aqueous Solution 2.5 percent. The scene was decontaminated by the Berkeley Township HazMat Response Team.

The Manchester Investigations Bureau, Manchester Office of Emergency Management, Manchester Fire Department, Manchester First Aid Squad, and the Berkeley Township HazMat Response Team responded to assist in the investigation.

The teacher and five students present during the incident did not report any injuries at the time of the spill.  The incident appears to be accidental in nature.

Officer Scott R. Thompson Laid to Rest

The Manchester Township Police joined with family, friends and fellow members of the law enforcement community on Thursday, April 16, to say goodbye to veteran Officer Scott R. Thompson, who passed away unexpectedly last week.

Funeral services for Officer Thompson were held at St. Luke’s Church in Toms River, with entombment following thereafter at Ocean County Memorial Park. Hundreds of mourners, including police officers, firefighters and other emergency workers from throughout New Jersey came to pay their respects and show their support for the  members of the Manchester Township Police as well as members of Officer Thompson’s family, including his wife Tracy and daughters Kelsey and Sydney. Also in attendance was Manchester Mayor Kenneth Palmer, as well as members of the Township Council.

At Ocean County Memorial Park, members of the Ocean County Emerald Society Pipes and Drums along with members of Officer Thompson’s squad escorted him to his final resting place. Officer Thompson was laid to rest as a Corporal after being posthumously promoted to the rank last week. The ceremony concluded with a fly-over by a NJSP helicopter and the presentation of the American Flag to Officer Thompson’s family by Chief Lisa Parker.

Everyone from the Manchester Township Police is extremely grateful for the outpouring of support from the community and other law enforcement agencies during this difficult time. It is heartwarming to see the countless offerings of condolences posted to social media and generous assistance given to Officer Thompson’s family through a GoFundMe campaign established in his honor (www.gofundme.com/scottthompsonmpd).

The Manchester Township Police would like to thank the following agencies for providing support during Officer Thompson’s funeral services: the Ocean County Prosecutors Office, the Ocean County Sheriff’s Office, the New Jersey State Police, Troop “C” Operations and Special Operations Section, the Toms River Police Department, the Jackson Township Police Department, the Stafford Township Police Department, the Lakehurst Police Department, the Barnegat Police Department, the Beachwood Police Department as well as the Manchester and Ridgeway Fire Departments, the Pleasant Plains Fire Department and the Manchester Volunteer First Aid.

Officer Thompson was exercising in the police headquarters gym on the morning of April 10, 2015, when he collapsed and was later pronounced at Community Medical Center. Officer Thompson was 47 years old.

Officer Thompson came highly recommended when he was hired by the Manchester Township Police in February of 1999. He began his law enforcement career in 1986 as a Special Officer in Seaside Park at age 18. Officer Thompson graduated from the Ocean County Police Academy in 1987, and in 1988 became a full time patrolman in South Toms River. In 1994, Officer Thompson was hired by the Lakehurst Police Department, where he was a member of the Manchester/Lakehurst Emergency Response Team.

Officer Thompson most recently was honored with a 2014 Meritorious Service Award for peacefully resolving a potentially volatile situation with an individual suffering from a mental illness. His other honors include: Exceptional Service Awards from South Toms River and Manchester, a Letter of Commendation from Lakehurst, and two Unit Citation Awards, fifteen positive performance notices, three Life Saving Awards and an Honorable Service Award from Manchester.

Route 70 Crash Causes Vehicle to Overturn

On Friday, April 17, 2015, at approximately 1:50 p.m., a green 2007 Hyundai Tucson collided with another vehicle and overturned on Route 70 in the Whiting Section of Manchester Township sending one driver to the hospital.

DSC_0128The Hyundai which was being operated by 67 year old Leslie J. Malsbury of Whiting was travelling east bound on State Highway 70 when it was struck by red 2008 Chrysler Concord being operated by 75 year old Norma Vasquez of Barnegat. The initial investigation reveals that Ms. Vasquez was stopped on the east bound shoulder of Route 70 using her cell phone prior to the crash and when she pulled back onto the travel portion of the roadway, she struck the Hyundai as it drove past. The impact occurred in the east bound lane and the collision caused the Hyundai to overturn onto its passenger side and then roll onto its driver side coming to rest in the west bound lane.

Ms. Malsbury was wearing her seatbelt at the time of the crash and only suffered a hand injury. She refused medical care. Ms. Vasquez was also wearing her seatbelt, but reported neck pain and was transported by ambulance to Kimball Medical Center, in Lakewood. The roadway was temporarily closed during the investigation by the Whiting Volunteer Fire Department. The crash is currently under investigation by Ptl. A. Ellis Traffic Safety Section.

Attempted Home-Invasion and Vehicle Burglaries in Cedar Glen Homes Leads to Three Arrests

On April 10, 2015, at approximately 4:15 a.m., the Manchester Township Police received two calls reporting suspicious activity from residents of the Cedar Glen Homes section of Manchester Township.

The first caller from Central Street reported that she observed three males attempt to enter her locked car. The second caller reported that three young males were ringing the doorbell of a residence on Hickory Street and that the homeowner was not familiar with these individuals and refused to answer the door.

Patrolman Kyle Rickvalsky and Patrolman Charles Gatnarek responded to the area and located two adult males and one juvenile male walking in the community. The two adult males were identified as Dylan C. Cox, a 23 year old male, from North Brunswick, New Jersey, and Ryan Ross, a 23 year old male, from Lakehurst. The juvenile was identified as a 15 year old male from Toms River.

Through the course of the investigation, officers found what appeared to be proceeds from vehicle burglaries in their possession. All three males were transported to Police Headquarters for further investigation. Detective David Fusaro responded to assist Ptl. Rickvalsky with the investigation. During the investigation, it was learned that all three males had conspired to commit and attempted to commit a home invasion in the Cedar Glen Homes community but were unsuccessful when the homeowner did not answer the door. They then proceeded to commit a series of vehicle burglaries.

All three males were subsequently charged with one count conspiracy to commit robbery, two counts of burglary, one count of criminal attempt burglary, one count of criminal attempt theft, and one count of theft. Dylan C. Cox and Ryan M. Ross were lodged in the Ocean County Jail in default of $100,000 bail. The juvenile was lodged at the Ocean County Juvenile Detention Facility. The investigation is ongoing and there is a potential for additional charges and arrest(s).

The Manchester Township Police would like to remind residents to be alert to their surroundings and contact the police when they observed suspicious activity.  Residents can contact the Manchester Police at 732-657-6111 or submit crime tips through our website under “Tipline” at Manchesterpolicenj.com.

Manchester Township Police Mourns Passing of Officer Scott R. Thompson

It is with great regret that the Manchester Township Police announces the untimely passing of veteran Officer Scott R. Thompson on Friday, April 10, 2015.352 Photo EOW 4-10-15

Officer Thompson was exercising in the police headquarters gym Friday morning when he collapsed and was later pronounced at Community Medical Center. Officer Thompson was 47 years old. Surviving are his wife, Tracy, and daughters Kelsey and Sydney.

Officer Thompson came highly recommended when he was hired by the Manchester Township Police in February of 1999. He began his law enforcement career in 1986 as a Special Officer in Seaside Park at age 18. Officer Thompson graduated from the Ocean County Police Academy in 1987, and in 1988 became a full time patrolman in South Toms River. In 1994, Officer Thompson was hired by the Lakehurst Police Department, where he was a member of the Manchester/Lakehurst Emergency Response Team.

“Scott was a kind, dedicated officer and family man. He loved his family and his fellow officers. Please keep his family in your thoughts and prayers. We all loved Scott and he will be missed terribly,” said Chief Lisa Parker.

Officer Thompson received many commendations and letters of appreciation from those he helped throughout his career. A letter the department once received from a motorcycle crash victim thanking Officer Thompson for his assistance reads, in part: “I could not have been in better hands than those of Officer Thompson. He was caring, professional, and represented your department in a manner which you should be proud.”

Officer Thompson most recently was honored with a 2014 Meritorious Service Award for peacefully resolving a potentially volatile situation with an individual suffering from a mental illness. Before his passing, Officer Thompson was slated for a promotion to the rank of Corporal. He will receive that honor posthumously during a ceremony to be announced at a later date. Information regarding funeral services will be announced as it becomes available.

A fundraising campaign raising money for Officer Thompson’s family is available by clicking here.

Manchester Township Police Cracking Down on Distracted Driving in April

distracteddriving
Manchester Township Police again have signed on to support the statewide UDrive. UText. UPay. distracted driving enforcement campaign this April.

Drivers talking and texting on their hand-held cell phones are the focus of the high visibility law enforcement initiative running from April 1-21. Even though Manchester was not among the municipalities to receive a grant to fund the program locally, the township’s police officers nonetheless will participate in the important enforcement operation.

“Distracted driving is a serious issue on our roadways,” said Gary Poedubicky, Acting Director of the New Jersey Division of Highway Traffic Safety. “The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that last year alone, 3,154 people were killed in distracted driving crashes and an estimated 424,000 people were injured in motor vehicle crashes involving a distracted driver.”

Police officers throughout Manchester, which is home to heavily-traveled sections of State Highways 70 and 37, will be on high alert for distracted drivers. Manchester’s Traffic Safety Section said that motorists should consider the dangers of picking up a cell phone, as even a few seconds of distraction—sending a quick text message or even glancing at an incoming call—could have serious consequences.

If motorists need to make a call or send a text message while driving, they are encouraged to pull over to a safe location before using their phone. Other distractions driving should be mindful of include: operating radio controls, applying makeup, talking to other passengers, tending to children or pets, and eating and drinking.

It is illegal in New Jersey to operate a motor vehicle while using a handheld electronic device. Currently, motorists violating New Jersey’s primary cell phone law face a $100 fine plus court costs and fees. However, last year those penalties increased to $200 to $400 for a first offense and could increase to $800 in subsequent violations.

Pedestrian Struck in Crosswalk at Route 530 and Swift Circle

On Thursday, April 2, 2015, Ms. Concetta DeRosa, 83, of the Whiting section of Manchester Township, was attempting to cross County Route 530 at Swift Circle when she was struck in the crosswalk by a 2003, silver, Lincoln Town Car, being operated by Frank Cinque, 79, also from Whiting.

Ms. DeRosa fell to the ground after the impact and was treated at the scene for bruises and a possible broken left arm by members of the Whiting Volunteer First Aid. She was later transported to Community Medical Center in Toms River for further examination.  Mr. Cinque was wearing his seatbelt and was not injured in the crash.

This crash is being investigated by Ptl. Douglas Higgins, of the Manchester Township Police Traffic Safety Section.

The Manchester Township Police wants to remind all drivers that the driver of a vehicle must stop and remain stopped to allow a pedestrian to cross the roadway within a marked crosswalk when the pedestrian is within the roadway which the vehicle is travelling as per N.J.S.A. 39:4-36a(1).

Manchester Police to Host Elite Law Enforcement Fitness Challenge; Registration and Sponsorship Now Accepted

The Manchester Township Police is pleased to announce it will host the inaugural Elite Law Enforcement Fitness Challenge in Whiting this summer. This team-based competition will raise money for Ocean of Love, a non-profit, charitable organization dedicated to helping Ocean County children with cancer and their families as well as help support the non-profit Manchester Township Police Fund.

The event, scheduled for June 24, 2015, at Harry Wright Lake, 1499 Lake Road, will involve four person teams completing grueling physical exercises for a chance to win the title of “Fittest Police Department” as well as a variety of prizes. Each four person team will compete in the following exercises: team vehicle pull, team tire flip, fence climbs, rope climbs, barrel roll, team member carry, farmers carry, clean and press, individual tire flip, pole flip/carry, 200 yard swim, and a four mile trail run among other surprise events.

An entry fee of $200 and a completed registration form from each team of four is required and must be received prior to June 1, 2015. This event is open to all sworn law enforcement officers and slots will be filled on a first come-first serve basis. Checks should be made payable to the Manchester Township Police Fund, Inc. Completed registration forms and payments should be returned to Detective David Fusaro at: Manchester Township Police, 1 Colonial Drive, Manchester, NJ 08759. Additional information can be found at www.manchesterpolicenj.com by clicking the Elite Law Enforcement Fitness Challenge link.

We encourage spectators to come support this event and witness the fittest men and women in Law Enforcement compete against each other.

Sponsorship opportunities for local businesses begin at just $100, and more information is available by contacting Detective Fusaro at 732-657-2009, ext. 4208 or dfusaro@manchestertwp.com. Sponsorship commitments must be received by May 15, 2015.

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Manchester Township Police Thankful for Resident John McGuire’s Service

The Manchester Township Police is honored to highlight the philanthropic efforts of township resident John McGuire, who has dedicated time and resources to make his hometown a better place.

Mr. McGuire, a retired elevator mechanic who worked in New York City, began his decades of service assisting the Manchester Little League in the 1980’s, when he helped to secure better playing fields and snack bars for the organization. Since then, he has been actively involved with the Manchester Township Police, Police Athletic League, Municipal Alliance and school district.

From left to right: Patrolmen Douglas Higgins, John McGuire and Paul Bachovchin present a donation to Regional Day School Transition Coordinator Renee Agro during a recent visit to the school.

From left to right: Ptl. Douglas Higgins, John McGuire and Ptl. Paul Bachovchin present a donation to Regional Day School Transition Coordinator Renee Agro during a recent visit.

“John has been a pillar of the community for more than 20 years. He’s always looking for ways to help out, whether that means offering his time to mentor children or donating funds to help purchase equipment that keeps our police officers safe,” said Chief Lisa Parker.

Though he commuted from Manchester to New York City for many years, Mr. McGuire has always enjoyed living in Manchester and never thought about moving closer to his job. The Manchester Township Police and PBA 246 are grateful for Mr. McGuire’s past nine years committed and selfless service as well as his many donations, which include several bullet resistant vests, a wet suit, a bugle for the Police Honor Guard, and countless supplies used to aid law enforcement riders during the annual Police Unity Tour.

“Whatever I could do, I’d try to do. I feel good when I go home at the end of the day after doing something for the community,” Mr. McGuire said.

Additionally, Mr. McGuire helps PBA 246 with the organization’s annual Golf Outing, which is scheduled this year for May 4th, and gives his time to the annual Penguin Plunge which raises money for the Regional Day School. Mr. McGuire also founded a scholarship to benefit a high school senior in memory of his late son and serves as a mentor to three students at Manchester Township Elementary School.

“I just love working with kids. If you want to stay young, work with the kindergarteners to fifth graders,” Mr. McGuire said.

Mr. McGuire’s granddaughter, Tess, a 6th grade student at Manchester Middle School has followed his lead and has been active in the community. Before the Manchester Township Police formed its K-9 unit this past January, Tess, a dog lover, worked to raise funds to purchase a vest for Brick Township’s police dog. She also worked to raise $500 for the Wounded Warrior Project.

“John is a great guy who does whatever he can for not only the Manchester Township Police and PBA 246, but for the township and especially the children. He’s very humble and will never seek out recognition for his good deeds. Without his support, many important programs wouldn’t thrive as they do today,” said PBA 246 President Paul Bachovchin, who has worked closely with Mr. McGuire for many years.

Chelsea Drive Home Uninhabitable Following Accidental Monday Morning Fire

A Chelsea Drive home in Crestwood Village 7 was deemed uninhabitable after emergency responders extinguished a fire at the residence on Monday, March 23, 2015.

Authorities responded to 12 Chelsea Drive for the report of a residential structure fire Monday morning. Manchester Township Police Patrolman Vincent DeRome was the first to arrive on scene and noticed flames coming from the roof after a neighbor called police at 6:21 a.m.

image2Fire companies from Whiting, Manchester, Ridgeway, Lakehurst, Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, Pinewald, and Bamber Lakes responded and extinguished the blaze. The homeowner and lone occupant, Alan Palm, was not home at the time of the fire and was not injured, though household pets perished as a result of the blaze.

The exact cause of the fire has not yet been determined, though it appears to be accidental in nature. It remains under investigation by Ocean County Deputy Fire Marshall Mike Wolfschmidt. Manchester Township Building Inspector Nicole Ashkar determined that the residence was uninhabitable. The Red Cross responded and provided Mr. Palm with temporary housing.

image1During the investigation, an inert mortar round was found inside the home, requiring officers from the New Jersey State Police Bomb Squad and Hazmat Units to respond. They determined that the item did not pose a threat to public safety. The Ocean County Sheriff’s Office K-9 accelerant dog also responded to the scene and found no evidence of explosive or incendiary material.

Also responding to the scene were Manchester Animal Control Officer Margaret Dellapietro, and Detectives John Anderson and Thomas Haskill from the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office.


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The mission of the Manchester Township Police Division is to provide the highest level of professional police service to our citizens and visitors by safeguarding lives and property, protecting the innocent, maintaining order, aggressively investigating and preventing crimes, impartially enforcing laws and upholding the Constitution, thereby enhancing the quality of life in our community.

 

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