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Winter Storm Warning

Snow Blizzard of 2016 Ridgewood CBD

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, the National Weather Service issues a WINTER STORM WARNING IN EFFECT FROM NOON SATURDAY TO 6 PM EST SUNDAY… * WHAT…Heavy mixed precipitation expected. Total snow accumulations of 6 to 10 inches and ice accumulations of around one tenth of an inch expected. * WHERE…Portions of northeast New Jersey, southern Connecticut and the lower Hudson Valley in New York. * WHEN…From noon Saturday to 6 PM EST Sunday. * ADDITIONAL DETAILS…Travel could be very difficult. PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS… A Winter Storm Warning means significant amounts of snow, sleet and ice will make travel very hazardous or impossible. Check local Department of Transportation information services for the latest road conditions.

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Rollover Crash following a high speed Chase by Fair Lawn Police

photos courtesy of Boyd Loving’s Facebook page

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Glen Rock NJ, A rollover crash following a high speed pursuit by Fair Lawn Police took place on the evening of Tuesday, 01/01 at the intersection of Gibson Place and Godfrey Terrace, Glen Rock. One (1) suspect in the vehicle was taken into custody by Fair Lawn Police and transported by a Glen Rock EMS ambulance to The Valley Hospital. A paramedic team from The Valley Hospital assisted Glen Rock EMTs with patient evaluation. A possibility exists that two (2) suspects from the incident triggering the pursuit may still be at large.

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Bitcoin and IRS Scam alert……….please share.

Utah Software Engineer Mints Physical Bitcoins

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Midland Park NJ, according to the Midland Park Police ,a Midland Park resident was contacted by a female caller who represented herself as an employee of the IRS. The caller explained to the resident that her identity was being used fraudulently and the resident would have to make a payment for an IRS investigation to begin. The resident informed the female caller she did not understand why the IRS was contacting her and asked for a further explanation. The female caller then informed the resident that she would have someone from the Midland Park Police Department contact her and explain the situation to her. A short time later the resident received a phone call from the Midland Park Police Department main number 201-444-2300, a male who represented himself as Officer James Morris of the Midland Park Police Department advised the resident a monetary payment was needed to further investigate the identity fraud. The original female caller then came back on the phone and instructed the resident to deposit money in to a bitcoin ATM machine located inside of a Ramsey NJ restaurant. The resident was ultimately scammed out of several thousand dollars.

This incident is the first where a scammer spoofed the phone number of the Midland Park Police Department. Officer James Morris does NOT work for the Midland Park Police Department. The Midland Park Police Department does NOT solicit any type of monetary payment for the IRS.

We remind you to NOT send any type of payment with gift cards, bitcoin, or electronic wire services such as Western Union.

If you receive a call which you suspect to be a scam simply hang up the phone. If you are unsure of the authenticity of the call please contact us at 201-444-2300 or contact a trusted family member who can help you determine the authenticity of the call.

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US Senate overwhelmingly passed criminal justice reform bill backed and promoted by President Trump

Ridgewood _Police_cars_theridgewoodblog

file photo by Boyd Loving

the staff of the Ridgewood blog 

Washington DC, The US Senate overwhelmingly passed a criminal justice reform bill backed and promoted by President Trump on Tuesday night.The First Step Act passed on a vote of 87 to 12, with dozens of Republicans joining all the Democratic senators in approving the bill.

Congressmen Tom Reed (NY-23) and Josh Gottheimer (NJ-05), Co-Chairs of the bipartisan Problem Solvers Caucus, released to the following statement:
“The Problem Solvers Caucus was proud to put our full weight behind the FIRST Step Act more than six months ago. This bill betters our communities, improves the lives of thousands and saves taxpayers money. Congress must continue to craft and pass more bipartisan legislation like the FIRST Step Act.”

Trump congratulated the Senate in a tweet soon after it passed , “America is the greatest Country in the world and my job is to fight for ALL citizens, even those who have made mistakes. Congratulations to the Senate on the bi-partisan passing of a historic Criminal Justice Reform Bill,” he tweeted. He went on , “This will keep our communities safer, and provide hope and a second chance, to those who earn it. In addition to everything else, billions of dollars will be saved. I look forward to signing this into law!”

The bill will make sweeping changes to the criminal justice system if signed into law, including making it easier for some prisoners to earn early release to halfway houses and protecting first-time offenders from mandatory minimum sentences.

Jared Kushner said in a USA Today editorial  in November , “The administration also worked with Congress to draft the FIRST STEP Act, legislation which seeks to strengthen recidivism reduction and evidence-based reentry programs for inmates in federal prisons. We continue to work with the law enforcement and faith and business communities to find ways to get people leaving prison properly reintegrated into society.”

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Two Alarm Fire Leaves Beauty Salon Heavily Damaged

photo courtesy of Boyd Loving’s Facebook page

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Midland Park NJ,  A 2-alarm Tuesday afternoon, 12/18, fire heavily damaged a building housing a first floor beauty salon in the 200 block of Godwin Avenue, Midland Park. Midland Park Fire Department was assisted by Ho-Ho-Kus Fire Department, Waldwick Fire Department, and Wyckoff Fire Department at the scene. No injuries were reported in the blaze. Mildand Park Police and Midland Park EMS also responded. Wyckoff Police assisted with traffic control

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17 North Crash Results in Non Life Threatening Injuries

photo courtesy of Boyd Loving’s Facebook page

the staff of the Ridgewood blog 

Ramsey NJ, Six (6) victims of a Monday morning, 12/17, crash on Route 17 northbound near Spring Avenue in Ramsey were transported to area hospitals by ambulances. Ramsey Police, Ramsey Rescue, and Ramsey EMS responded to the incident along with mutual aid ambulances from Upper Saddle River and The Valley Health System. Two (2) wrecked vehicles were removed from the scene by flatbed tow trucks. One (1) travel lane of Route 17 northbound and the exit ramp to Spring Street from Route 17 northbound were closed while emergency crews worked. All injuries were reported to have been non life threatening in nature.

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Fort Lee Insurance Broker Admits Health Care Fraud

Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey

the staff of the Ridgewood blog 

Fort Lee NJ, An insurance broker with an office in Fort Lee, New Jersey, today admitted defrauding Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield, U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito announced.

Lawrence Ackerman, 54, a resident of Old Tappan, New Jersey, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Anne E. Thompson in Trenton federal court to a superseding information charging him with one count of health care fraud.

According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:

Ackerman was the chief operating officer of Atlantic Business Associates (ABA) and Atlantic Medical Associates (AMA), two “shell” companies through which he marketed health insurance nationally to people who were not his employees and therefore ineligible for health coverage. During the month of January 2011, he delivered $481,500 in health care benefits to ineligible participants.

The count of health care fraud to which Ackerman pleaded guilty is punishable by a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a fine of $250,000. Ackerman was originally charged in a two-count indictment with conspiracy to defraud Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of $5.6 million and the welfare fund of Local 2326 of $1 million in fraudulent health care claims. Under terms of the plea agreement, Ackerman will be responsible for making full restitution to Horizon and to the union’s benefit plan for their losses. Sentencing is scheduled for March 20, 2019.

U.S. Attorney Carpenito credited special agents of the Department of Labor, Office of the Inspector General, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Michael Mikulka; agents of the Office of Employee Benefit Security Act (EBSA), under the direction of Regional Director Darren Cohen; and agents of the Office of Labor Management Standards (OLMS), under the supervision of Regional Director Andriana Vamvakas.

The government is represented by Senior Litigation Counsel V. Grady O’Malley of the Organized Crime/Gangs Unit and Assistant U.S. Attorney Sammi Malek of the Narcotics/OCDETF unit in Newark.

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Bergen County Prosecutor : Be wary of calls from strangers. Verify information told to you over the phone.

Nigerian scam michael-scott-

the staff of Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office puts out a phone scam alert:  The IRS? The FBI? My bank representative? A law enforcement officer? Really?

It isn’t new. But it isn’t old either. Phone scams have been around for a while. They do change as these criminals get sneakier and bolder. But.

One thing doesn’t change…Fraudsters can be very convincing sometimes, so keeping your guard up is crucial. Being suspicious of phone calls from strangers is key. And one thing is for sure…the IRS, the FBI, and BCPONJ will never call you on the phone to ask you to repay a debt, fine or warrant using Bitcoin, gift cards, bank wire, or Western Union.

Be wary of calls from strangers. Verify information told to you over the phone. Contact your local police if ever in doubt. Don’t send money blindly to a voice over the phone.

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Two Landscapers Overcome By Carbon Monoxide In Township of Washington

photo screenshot courtesy of Boyd Loving’s Facebook Page 

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Twp. of Washington NJ, Representatives from OSHA are currently investigating a Tuesday morning, 12/11 workplace accident in Washington Township involving Carbon Monoxide exposure that sent two (2) landscapers to The Valley Hospital in critical condition. Washington Township Police and the Bergen County Sheriff’s Office Bureau of Criminal Identification are also on the Pond Drive, Washington Township scene.

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South Hackensack Man Allegedly Stole $150,000 From Employer

Amazon Introduces New Tablet At News Conference In New York

the staff of the Ridgewood blog 

South Hackensack NJ, acting Bergen County Prosecutor Dennis Calo announced the arrest of NICHOLAS CARUSO (DOB: 02/07/1969; married; employed as a medical office manager) of 29 Maple Avenue, South Hackensack, NJ on charges of Theft by Deception and Computer Related Theft. The arrest is the result of an investigation conducted by the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office under the direction of Chief Robert Anzilotti.

In October 2018, the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office Financial Crimes Unit received a complaint that Nicholas CARUSO was suspected of using his Bergen County based employer’s Amazon and bank accounts to make purchases for himself and to pay his own personal bills.

An investigation by detectives from the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office Financial Crimes Unit revealed that between July 2015 and September 2018, Nicholas CARUSO, an office manager at a Bergen County based medical practice, had gained access to his employer’s business checking account and had used online banking and bill pay services to pay his own personal expenses. Those expenses included credit card and vehicle finance charges. CARUSO also established an Amazon account in his employer’s name, which was attached to the business checking account for payment purposes. The total theft by CARUSO was in excess of $150,000.

As a result of the investigation, Nicholas CARUSO was arrested on December 6, 2018 in Hackensack, NJ and charged with one count of Theft By Deception, with the amount involved being greater than $75,000, in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:20-4, a 2nd degree crime; and, one count of Computer Related Theft, in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:20-25c, with the amount involved being greater than $5,000, a 2nd degree crime. CARUSO is scheduled for a first appearance in Central Judicial Processing Court in Hackensack, NJ on Wednesday, December 26, 2018 at 8:30 a.m. 2

Acting Prosecutor Calo states that these charges are merely accusations and that the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.