LITTLE SILVER: PLAYING IT SAFE AT PROM TIME

MockcrashLocal responders staged a mock crash outside Red Bank Regional High School on May 27, as part of Project Prom activities to encourage students to make safe choices during Prom. 

Press release from Red Bank Regional High School

Every year, Red Bank Regional High School sends off its seniors to have a wonderful, safe time at the prom. Just prior to that, they try in the most elaborate ways to discourage bad choices of drinking and distracted driving in what is known as the Project Prom Program.

On May 27, a mock crash was conducted on the school’s front campus, with the help of the sending towns’ fire, police and emergency medical services. The Little Silver and Shrewsbury Fire Departments employed their “jaws of life” equipment to extricate the mock student victims from their potential death-trap automobile wrecks.  The New Jersey State Police South Star helicopter crew landed at RBR and simulated a medi-vac flight of one victim to the nearest trauma center, while another went to the neighborhood hospital. A hearse from John Day’s Funeral Home took away one certain fatality.

Project Prom was created 11 years ago by Little Silver Police Officer Peter Gibson, who subsequently served as RBR’s first School Resource Officer (SRO). The present SRO, Robert Chenoweth, coordinates the program at RBR under Officer Gibson’s community leadership.

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M’TOWN: BOATER IN FATAL CRASH INDICTED

George Harrington being placed under arrest for drunken driving of a boat shortly after the 2011 crash. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

[Editor’s note: See update below]

The pilot of a boat that smashed into another on the Navesink River almost two years ago has been indicted on vehicular homicide charge, the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s office announced Tuesday.

George Harrington, 41, of Browns Dock Road in Middletown, is alleged in a grand jury indictment handed up Monday to have been under the influence of liquor or drugs when a Boston Whaler he was piloting plowed into a vessel near buoy 20, between Middletown and Fair Haven, on July 23, 2011.

Christopher Plante, 50, of Keansburg, was killed in the crash.

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COPS: WHALER ‘RODE OVER’ VICTIM’S BOAT

buoy-20Saturday night’s fatal boat collision occurred near Buoy 20, seen here from Rich Stavola’s Navesink River Road home, where authorities based their rescue operations. (Click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

A combination of alcohol and speed led to the death of a 50-year-old Keansburg man in a late-night boating accident on the Navesink River Saturday, authorities said Monday.

George Harrington, 39, of Atlantic Highlands, was “operating at a fairly high rate of speed” at about 11:30 p.m. Saturday when his 20-foot Boston Whaler, carrying five passengers, hit a Stingray operated by Christopher Plante in the area of Buoy 20 in the Middletown section of the river, State Police Sergeant Stephen Jones tells redbankgreen.

Harrington’s boat “rode over the stern of Plante’s vessel,” Jones said.

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‘CRASH’ SENDS MESSAGE IN GORY DETAIL

rbr-mock2Local volunteers ready a mock patient to be removed from a staged car crash and transported via a helicopter. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

With red lights flashing, power tools humming, glass shattered into crystal rocks on the pavement and twisted metal — what just minutes prior had been car roofs and doors —  tossed to the side, the jaws slowly lowered and the cell phones were pointed in ‘capture’ mode.

After firefighters muscled the jaws of life to tear aluminum and carbon fiber from two cars that had become cages to its passengers, EMS volunteers broke out the neck braces and popped the stretchers into position, ready to take away the victims of a head-on collision Friday morning.

Then the hearse arrived, and somebody was being zipped into a white body bag.

This high school tradition, a morbid mise en scene intended to spring the neck hair of prom-going seniors, couldn’t get more real short of somebody’s heart actually stopping.

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INMATE CHARGED FOR LITTLE SILVER CRIME

By DUSTIN RACIOPPIjust_in1

A Red Bank man, already in jail on burglary charges, faces additional charges for his alleged connection in the burglary of a Little Silver home this summer, borough police said.

After Little Silver police collected and compared DNA with the State Police, they charged Tujuane Smith, 36, on Wednesday with burglary and theft for a June 17 burglary at a home on Bennett Lane, Little Silver Detective Sgt. Daniel Shaffery said.

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M’TOWN MAN CHARGED IN EXPLOSION

mtown-explosionThe home at 56 Twin Brooks Ave., where three people were injured in an explosion Tuesday night. (Photo by Dustin Racioppi; click to enlarge)

By DUSTIN RACIOPPI

[EDITOR’S NOTE: This story has been updated to include information from the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office and Middletown police.]

A Middletown man has been charged in connection with an explosion at his Twin Brooks Avenue home that injured two members of the State Police, the Asbury Park Press reports.

Frank Szmaja, 64, was charged with one count of third-degree possession of a destructive device, one count of second-degree causing or risking widespread injury or damage, plus the disorderly persons offenses of persons possessing explosives or destructive devices to notify police, maintaining a nuisance and violation of a law intended to protect public health and safety, the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office said in a release.

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