In an undated agreement, the Borough of Roselle Park (Union County) agreed to pay $15,000 to an Elizabeth woman who sued a Roselle Park Police officer for "illegally, improperly and without probable cause" issuing her a summons for unlawful parking in a space marked for the physically handicapped.
In her suit, and according to an Appellate Division decision, Lorraine Selecky said Officer James Cantrell issued her the summons by mail after Cantrell, while off duty, interjected himself in an "intense argument" that Selecky was having with her 13-year-old daughter as they approached a Redbox video machine outside a 7-Eleven store in Roselle Park. Cantrell was already at the Redbox machine with his children when Selecky and her daughter approached. According to the Appellate Division decision, "a heated argument occurred between [Selecky] and Cantrell, either because [Selecky] thought Cantrell's children were taking too long in making their choice or because Cantrell interjected himself in [Selecky's] mother-daughter dispute."
Hackensack pays $50,000 to settle Muslim father's claim that police beat him in front of family and called him a "f***ing terrorist."
On April 15, 2014, the City of Hackensack (Bergen County) agreed to pay $50,000 to a local businessman and his family who sued members of the Hackensack Police Department for excessive force and hate crime violations.
In his suit, Fouad Dakka said that on April 7, 2007, he brought his 11 year old daughter to the Hackensack Police Department at the direction of Detective Tina M. Clouse in order to be processed under a complaint "that some other girl filed against her in retaliation for plaintiff's daughter having filed a complaint against this girl." He said that because he was Muslim and of Arab descent, he was nervous and arranged to have an attorney be with him during this encounter with police. Dakka claimed that when he arrived at the police station, he advised Clouse that his attorney was parking his car and would be in the station to accompany them in a moment.
Clouse allegedly "became extremely irate, indicated that she refused to wait even a second for any attorney or for any reason . . . [because] it is Saturday and she was already late for her personal plans for that day." Dakka alleged that Clouse "lunged forward at" the 11-year-old, grabbed her arm and attempted to pull her into the police department. Dakka said that he and his daughter were hugging each other protectively while she was being pulled by Clouse.
By Matthew Boyer. Matthew Boyer is a School of Arts and Science sophomore with a major in political science and a minor in German. His column, “Legalizing Life,” runs in The Daily Targum on alternate Wednesdays.
Every election, America faces a battle between two dominant political parties, which in turn divides America. We bicker about the opposing party’s policies and are distracted by trivial matters. We then elect a new president who typically behaves similarly to the one prior. Four or eight years down the road, half the country regrets who they cast their vote for. This scenario has essentially been an ongoing ordeal for decades. The American people have let the establishment of the two dominating parties overshadow the possibility of new voices in American politics. But there is a fresh alternative to the Democrats and Republicans we have all come to love and hate: Libertarians.
Putting aside talking points from watching an hour of MSNBC or Fox News, what are the legitimate differences between Democrats and Republicans? Well, let’s start with America’s history of military interventionism. Many people consider Democrats to be anti-war, whereas Republicans are considered warmongers — hence the anti-Condoleezza Rice sentiment among the University faculty. However, since World War II, history in the White House has shown an overwhelming pursuit of war, regardless of which party held office.For example, our current president continues Middle Eastern interventionism, global spying programs and unrestricted drone use, and he is a Democrat. Somalia intervention was under Bill Clinton, a Democrat. The Iraq and Afghanistan wars were under George W. Bush, a Republican. The Gulf War was under the President Bush senior, also a Republican. The Vietnam War was started under John F. Kennedy and continued through Johnson’s administration. Both were Democrats. It was Franklin D. Roosevelt who established the Japanese internment camps across the United States through executive order. The striking similarity in both parties’ foreign policy suggests the need for a new party that would boldly proclaim their pro-diplomacy, pro-peace and anti-war policies.
Thomas J. Chirichella, First Assistant Prosecutor
Somerset County Prosecutor’s Office
40 North Bridge Street
Somerville, NJ 08876
Dear Mr. Chirichella:
I chair the New Jersey Libertarian Party's Police Accountability Project and have some concerns that the instructions on the Warren Township Police Department's web site regarding filing of an Internal Affairs complaint are too onerous and may dissuade some people from filing. I am directing this e-mail to your attention (with a copy to Freeholder Director Scaglione, who is the liaison to the Prosecutor's Office) because you are listed on the Somerset County Prosecutor’s Office website as the legal director to the SCPO's Internal Affairs Unit.
I invite your attention to the page (on-line here) on Warren's site that instructs potential IA complainants to complete the Complaint Form (on-line here) and "bring this completed form to Warren Police headquarters."
In the November 2014 election the NJ Libertarian Party will be running candidates under the Libertarian Party banner. The following candidates have successfully petitioned to be on the ballot:
- Joe Baratelli of Mercerville for U.S. Senate
- Dorit Goikhman of Morganville for U.S. Congress (6th District)
- Jim Gawron of Flanders for U.S. Congress (7th District)
- Steve Uccio of East Windsor for Mercer County Freeholder
- Brian Pizza of Forked River for Ocean County Freeholder
Please provide whatever support you can to our candidates!
In apparent display of social correctness and lack of understanding of social media and free speech rights, Executive Director of HR, James Miller has suspended Associate Professor Francis Schmidt over a picture Schmidt had uploaded to his Google+ account.
Our schools and universities should be a place of open discussion, discovery, and analysis of all thoughts. By limiting what can be discussed, the bureaucrats who run our higher education institutions are limiting the ability of young people to learn and develop. Instead of banishing anything that may be deemed offensive, schools should be encouraging students to have their views challenged, discussed, and analyzed.
The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE) summarizes the censorship:
Displaying a lack of both pop culture and First Amendment awareness, administrators at Bergen Community College in New Jersey placed Professor Francis Schmidt on leave this past January, requiring him to meet with a psychiatrist before returning to campus—just for posting a picture of his daughter in a T-shirt quoting the popular HBO television show Game of Thrones.
Wayne D. Pelura, Committeeman
Township of Carneys Point
Dear Committeeman Pelura:
I note from your 2013 Financial Disclosure Statement (on-line here) that you listed no source of income for either you or your wife Patricia. Given that your home on Johnson Avenue is assessed at $290,800 and has taxes levied against in in the amount of $7,287.45 (property detail sheet on-line here), it seems very unlikely that neither you nor your wife have a source of income greater than $2,000.
The entire point of the Financial Disclosure Statement filing is to help citizens learn whether public officials have conflicts of interest. Suppose for example, the Township Committee was considering whether to award a contract to a company that employed your wife Patricia. Clearly, it would be violation of the Local Government Ethics Law (LGEL) for you to vote on or participate in the discussion regarding that contract. Yet, absent your wife's employer being listed as a source of income on your Financial Disclosure Form, a member of the public (unless he or she knew or was familiar with you and your family) would likely not be aware that you would be conflicted from voting on that contract. Thus, when public officials decline or refuse to identify the sources of income for them and their family members, they are frustrating citizens' ability to detect violations of the LGEL.
NOTE: to attend as a NJ Delegate you must be approved by the NJLP State Board and be a current Libertarian Party member.
Last November, I traveled and spoke to European Libertarian groups in Moscow and in Madrid. The latest additions to our speaker lineup come from contacts I made during his trip.
Vera Kichanova is a libertarian elected official and activist who has been described as one of "Putin's Unruly Children." In 2012, she was elected as a municipal deputy in Moscow's Yuzhnoye Tushino district. In 2013, she received a Democracy Award from the National Endowment for Democracy. While in Washington, D.C., to receive the award, she met with National Security Adviser Susan Rice in the White House. Back in Moscow, she works as a journalist and is a frequent and vocal advocate for liberty who has been detained or arrested many times for her activities. She has become one of the most visible and internationally known faces of the Russian opposition, and has been featured in articles in the New York Times, the Washington Post, Der Spiegel, and more. Vera is 22 years old.
On April 2, 2014, Administrative Law Judge Susan M. Scarola recommended acceptance of a settlement of an Open Public Record Act (OPRA) case filed with the Government Records Council. Judge Scarola's recommendation and the Settlement Agreement in the case of George F. Burdick, Jr. v. Township of Franklin (Hunterdon County) are on-line here.
According to the agreement, Franklin Township Clerk Ursula Stryker agreed to "personally pay a fine of $1,000 to the Government Records Council" within 60 days of Scarola's order. The agreement recites that the Township acknowledged that it was able to comply with an Interim Order of the GRC, but attributed its failure to do so to "the intentional acts of at least one of its professionals which directly affected [Stryker's] ability to comply with the Interim Order." The agreement also recites that the Township "has already made adjustments to its Open Public Records protocol to ensure continual compliance with the GRC's ruling" and that the Township "wishes to resolve this matter without having to expend additional counsel fees for one or more days of hearings."
On January 27, 2014, the Town Council of Hammonton, an Atlantic County community with a 2010 population 14,791, resolved to appoint a separate deputy records custodian for each of ten principal departments in the municipality. The same resolution also appointed nine "Alternate Records Custodians"--one for each of the ten departments except for the Recreation Department.
According to Resolution 023-2014, which is on-line here, "the Open Public Records Act does not preclude the Municipality from developing reasonable and practical measures for responding to OPRA requests which may include the designation of deputy custodians for particular types of records."
Published in Suburban Trends
Please let me be one of the first to commend you folks at the Suburban Trends for your editorial today (April 2, 2014) calling for the end of marijuana prohibition.
As we all know, alcohol prohibition didn’t work in the 1920s (and created all kinds of crime problems) and the so-called "War on Drugs" isn’t working either. Ninety years may have passed since the first "prohibition" but economic laws never change and certain substances will always be available.
The late free-market economist Milton Friedman called for the repeal of drug laws decades ago, and he was ridiculed for his Libertarian pro-individual choice views; time has, however, shown him to be correct.
March 21, 2014
Internal Affairs Unit
Burlington Township Police Department
851 Old York Rd
Burlington, NJ 08016
Dear Sir or Madam:
I chair the New Jersey Libertarian Party's Police Accountability Project and ask that you accept this letter as our Internal Affairs complaint. We would like your agency to investigate whether Sergeant David Brintzinghoffer (as well as any other officers and personnel employed by your agency) acted in accordance with department policy and the law regarding a July 5, 2006 incident involving Demetrius Cope.
According to the Appellate Division's March 21, 2014 decision in State v. Demetrius C. Cope, Docket No. A-2165-11T3 (on-line here), Sergeant Brintzinghoffer conducted an unconstitutional "protective sweep" of Cope's apartment that resulted in him finding a firearm in "plain view." The Appellate Division ultimately ruled that the firearm is inadmissible because it was "discovered and seized as a result of a warrantless search that did not fall into any of the recognized exceptions to the warrant requirement."
On July 12, 2011, Glenn A. Grant, Director of the Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC) issued Directive #03-11 which states in its preamble that:
An open and transparent court system is an integral part of our democratic government. The public has a right of access not only to our courts, but also to court records. Public access to court records allows citizens to understand the system and to judge its effectiveness.
This lofty goal, however, does not actually play out in practice.
On September 6, 2013, New Jersey enacted L.2013, Chapter 158 which established a conditional discharge program for municipal courts that allows first time offenders to avoid prosecution for a large variety of disorderly and petty disorderly offenses if they enter into a supervisory program. The new law, which became effective on January 4, 2014, requires applicants to pay $75 into a "non-lapsing fund to be known as the 'Municipal Court Diversion Fund,' which shall be administered by the Administrative Office of the Courts."