Union County Week In Review: Police Investigate Child Luring; Target Expansion Opens

Here's a roundup of some of the top stories throughout Union County during the week of Oct. 14-20.

Berkeley Heights

Community leaders, businessmen and Scouters will join together to honor Eagle Scout John Pullara on Oct. 24. John will be receiving the Outstanding Eagle Scout Award in recognition for his dedication to his community and for exemplifying the values of the Boy Scouts of America.

Two Charged With Unlawful Possession of Weapon in Berkeley Heights

On Oct. 11, Ptl. Ron Desimoni arrested Raheim Williams, 36, of Chambersburg PA, and Jamar Carter, 30, of Manhattan, NY. Neither individual could explain where they had come from or why they were in the area, both exhibiting signs of nervousness. After receiving consent to search the motor vehicle, Ptl. DeSimoni recovered a 9mm handgun in the trunk. Both individuals were placed under arrest, brought to police headquarters and charged with unlawful possession of a weapon. Williams was also charged with being an unlicensed driver.


Missing Student Located Following Search

A student of a Westfield school who jumped off a school bus and fled early Tuesday morning was located after a day-long search by Clark and Westfield police and fire departments and the National Guard. The boy, 17 years old from North Haledon, was found during the afternoon as marine units responded to search the Clark Reservoir off Raritan Road. Union County Police Chief Dan Vaniska said the missing juvenile was located, cold and wet, by a Union County Police Department patrol unit near Featherbed Lane in Clark.

Clark Target Expansion Opens For Business

The Clark Target store expansion opened on Oct. 14. Check out our photos of the new space. The store's expansion – into the next-door space formerly occupied by Marshall's (which moved to new digs across the parking lot in February) and Payless Shoes – includes an open-market grocery layout. New food additions include items such as bananas, strawberries and bagged lettuce; ground beef, chicken and pork; baked goods and dairy. The store also now offers a dry, dairy and frozen assortment and convenience foods such as snacks and beverages.


Police Investigate Possible Child Luring

The Cranford Police Department continues to investigate a possible child luring
incident that occurred on Oct. 18 not far from a local school. An 11-year-old juvenile was approached while walking to school at approximately 7:30 a.m. on Thursday morning, according to a statement issued by the Cranford Police Department.

Former Township Commissioner Arrested For DUI

A former Cranford Township Commissioner was charged with driving under the influence on Sept. 29 following a motor vehicle stop in Lambertville. According to police reports, Lambertville Police Officer Michael Gramlich stopped Richard Salls, 57, on Route 29 at approximately 10 p.m. for speeding. He was allegedly traveling 63 miles per hour in a 40-mile per hour zone.

Cranford BOE Addresses Underage Drinking

The Cranford School Board submitted a letter to the editor aimed at parents who allow teens to consume alcohol in their homes. The letter addressed and danger and safety issues of underage drinking.


Fanwood Woman Spreads Awareness for Mammograms at 40

Resident of Fanwood, Patty Weinstock, was diagnosed with Stage 1 breast cancer in 2009 at age 42.  While she was home recovering from her biopsy, new governmental guidelines encouraged people to wait until age 50 to receive yearly mammograms. Knowing early detection saved her life, Weinstock's goal is to save even just one person by encouraging them to get mammograms yearly starting at age 40.  Additionally, Weinstock spoke at Fanny Wood Day and provided pink ribbons for a small donation towards Susan G. Komen's Race for the Cure.

Fanwood Council Will not Appeal Consolidation Study

At Tuesday's council meeting, all board members were given the opportunity to voice their opinion on whether or not to appeal the consolidation study. Mayor Mahr along with most of the board members specifically pointed out not wanting to spend tax payers money. Mahr asked the members if any of them wanted to make a motion to vote for an appeal but all council members chose to see how the study will play out.


Democrats Present Campaign Platforms To Residents

On Thursday, Oct. 11, Democratic candidates for Garwood Council, Bill Nierstedt and Ann Palmer, spoke to residents at Garwood's the Pointe condominium complex as part of Candidates Night. Nierstedt and Palmer were asked to explain why they’re running, what problems they plan to address, what they foresee for the borough, how the Pointe fits into that future, and why their proposals are more appealing than those of their opponents.

New Providence

Red Ribbon Week Kicks Off in New Providence

Red Ribbon Week, which began Friday and ends on Oct. 26 in New Providence, was started in 1988 by a group of parents who began wearing red satin badges in memory of Enrique Camarena, a Federal Drug Enforcement Administration Agent who was killed in the line of duty. As a result, in 1989 the red ribbon became a united symbol of commitment to create a drug-free America, showing a nation’s intolerance to alcohol and drug abuse. Through the efforts of the Municipal Alliance and the schools this week, Mayor J. Brooke Hern said the Borough of New Providence will join the nation’s celebration of Red Ribbon Week by displaying red ribbons throughout the Borough at the Municipal Center, in the business district, at schools and at places of worship.

Local Business Owners Attend Networking Breakfast in New Providence

More than 200 local business owners participated in a morning networking business breakfast on Oct. 16, presented by "Union County Means Business" and hosted at the headquarters of NJ Sharing Network in New Providence. The focus was on digital news and hyperlocal media, and featured a panel that included Lorin Kleiner, regional publisher for Patch, Julio Sabato, publisher of ElizabethInsideOut TV and Michael Shapiro, publisher of The Alternative Press.

New Providence Police Investigate Motor Vehicle Thefts

New Providence Police recently handled three reports of motor vehicle thefts between Oct. 9 and 11. Detectives have recovered evidence and are currently investigating these recent motor vehicle burglaries. Residents are reminded to lock their vehicles, remove valuables from their vehicles and to report any suspicious activity to the New Providence Police at (908) 665-1111.


Ambitious Plans for Downtown Springfield Unveiled

Architects, designers and attorneys presented Springfield officials with plans for Springfield's Morris Ave. business district that looked markedly different from the downtown that exists today. The presentation, which officials and developers stressed was an early draft, showed a bright and modern urban shopping area teeming with pedestrians and lit by sunlight. 

Fall for Springfield Festival

Springfield once again celebrated its annual fall festival.  Hundreds attended to enjoy a variety of food from local merchants, a vintage car show and family friendly attraction. Click here for a Patch reader-submitted video of the day. 

Police: Traffic Stop Leads to Drug Bust

After Springfield officers pulled an S.U.V. over for reportedly running a red light near Guadineer Middle School, they reportedly found that the car contained over 60 packets of heroin in a search on Oct. 16. 


Burglaries Prompt Summit PD to Issue Warning

Police Chief Robert Weck wrote, "Recently, several communities in the area have been experiencing an increase in home and car burglaries and I wanted to take the time to communicate with you about some simple steps you can take to make your home and vehicles less vulnerable."

Police Respond to Fight Between Juveniles

"I believe it's a student versus student," situation, he said. One of the teens involved in the fight is said to have fled the scene before cops arrived, according to Sgt. Peter Frank.


New Businesses Coming to Downtown Westfield

Parents and pita fans will have some new offerings to sample soon in downtown Westfield. Kidville, coming to 109 E. Broad St., and Pita Grill and Creperie, occupying 108 Quimby St., are slated to open within the next few months.


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