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Notice to Residents: September 2, 2022 Update from the Chief of Police

Residents,

I’m writing you today to discuss a very serious public safety trend emerging within Morris County in regards to stolen vehicles, occupied home burglaries and bail reform.

Last night two residences were victimized in Madison, NJ along the Chatham Borough border by criminals attempting to steal vehicles and entering homes.  In one instance an unsecured vehicle was entered and the criminal suspect attempted to utilize the garage door opener to enter the residence.  Luckily the garage door opener had been deactivated prior to this incident and the suspects were unable to gain entry to the residence.  In the second incident the suspects utilized the garage door opener, from an unsecured vehicle, to gain access to the house in their search for the vehicle’s key fobs.  The home was equipped with an alarm system which activated upon entry to the home and the suspects fled.

This is a growing concern within our region of the County and Morris County as a whole.  Florham Park, East Hanover, Madison, and Chatham Township have all been victimized by occupied home burglaries within the last three weeks where criminal suspects have entered the homes searching for key fobs to steal vehicles and Chatham Borough has one of the highest stolen vehicle victimization rates within the County.  Our region’s close proximity to major thoroughfares, such as Columbia Turnpike, Route 24, Route 280 and Route 124 provides these criminal actors with easy access and regress from our communities. 

The good news is residents are beginning to listen to our public service announcements and are removing their key fobs from their vehicles, making the theft of those vehicles more difficult.  The criminal element, however, is adapting to our countermeasures and are now entering unsecured vehicles in search of garage door openers in an effort to gain access to our homes.  Once inside our homes they’re searching for the key fobs, purses, money or any other valuable they can quickly and easily take.  The scariest part of this brazenly criminal conduct is they’re entering occupied homes without any regard for the potential threat and danger that conduct causes not only to themselves but more importantly to our residents.  As residents and Police continue to take proactive steps to reduce victimization these criminals are raising their level of criminal activity to achieve their desired results.  It is only a matter of time before our proactive steps and their escalated response turns violent.

Our investigations have shown a direct correlation to the catch and release approach our State has taken to criminal activity.  As an example, the three criminal suspects we arrested after the stolen vehicle pursuit and subsequent crash that we posted to Facebook on May 31, 2022, resulted in the male criminal actor being released after 4 hours of custody and the two juvenile criminals, with extensive criminal histories, despite our efforts to have them lodged in juvenile detention were released without consequence.  Furthermore, the investigation into the Florham Park occupied home burglary posted to Facebook on August 17, 2022 has revealed the potential suspects were arrested in Morris County in July for similar offenses and later released.  If anyone thinks these are just juveniles who pose no significant risk to the safety of our residents or the residents of this County or this State I direct you to our July 26, 2022 Facebook post detailing the arrest of several criminals by the Denville Police Department who were in possession of a loaded handgun after they had been observed via video surveillance in Florham Park and after attempting to commit several crimes in Madison.

Several of the region’s Police Chiefs met with the Morris County Sheriff and the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office to discuss a multi-pronged approach to combating these criminals who have been allowed to victimize and re-victimize our residents due to failures in criminal justice reform.  Aside from increased vigilance and residents acting as force multipliers in our communities, we all must take an aggressive and sustained approach to demanding reform legislatively.  I encourage all residents to continuously contact your State representatives to demand change and help bring public safety back to our State.

Florham Park belongs to the 27th Legislative District.  The names and telephone numbers of our representatives are listed below.  Please help us protect our communities and make a positive impact for all of Morris County. 

- State Senator Richard Codey
973-535-5017

- Assemblywoman Mila Jasey
973-762-1886

- Assemblyman John McKeon
973-377-1606

Stay safe and vigilant!

Joseph Orlando
Chief of Police
September 2, 2022

Notice to Residents: July 29, 2022 Update from the Chief of Police

Residents, an important message regarding carrying firearms.

With Permits to Carry in New Jersey becoming more accessible due to recent changes in legislation, it is extremely important that those with valid carry permits remember the restrictions that have NOT changed.  The most important, in our opinion, is that legally possessed weapons are NOT permitted inside any schools or on any school grounds statewide, even if possessed by a civilian with an approved New Jersey Permit to Carry.  This applies to any school, college, university, or other educational institution.  There has been, and will continue to be, zero tolerance for violations of this law.

This applies to parents picking up their kids at the end of the day, your best neighbor bringing your kid’s forgotten tablet to them 5 minutes after they arrived at school, grandparents attending a spring band concert, an older sibling helping someone move into their college dorm, or anyone using school playgrounds, gymnasiums, or lawns on an off day – for any reason.  This is state law under N.J.S.A. 2C:39-5e; the full text can be found here - https://codes.findlaw.com/nj/title-2c-the-new-jersey-code-of-criminal-justice/nj-st-sect-2c-39-5.html. The penalty is a third degree crime, the same kind of crime that results in you losing your gun and not getting it back for a lonnnng time as well as now having a criminal record.

So please, while the laws continue to be subject to change, then change again, then even more change, one thing is certain - guns, licensed or not, are not allowed in schools or on school grounds.

If anyone has any questions about the current gun laws in New Jersey, please call Det. Lt. Brian Ford (973-410-5430) or Det. Sgt. Michael Neilan (973-410-5411).  For instructions on how to make an application for a firearms permit, click the tab labeled “Services” above on this website.


Joseph J. Orlando
Chief of Police
July 29, 2022

AlertFlorhamPark

AlertFlorhamPark will allow you to get emergency notifications in any manner you choose, including phone, email, text, or social media, so you can stay informed during major storms or other emergencies taking place in Florham Park or throughout Morris County. Users have the ability to enter multiple addresses located in multiple jurisdictions within a single profile. If you care for a loved one who lives in another Morris County town and want to be notified of issues affecting that person’s municipality, your one registration process will satisfy that need.

AlertFlorhamPark also offers a free Smart911 signup option for county residents, providing a greatly enhanced and potentially lifesaving 9-1-1 emergency call service for anyone who registers for it.

Smart911 is FREE, and your information is secure, accessible only to a 9-1-1 call taker. This service can provide key information to responders that can make your family safer. For example:

  • Address Details: How to access your home, number of bedrooms, location of utility shut-offs, and if you live in a multi-family building;
  • Family Details: Number of residents, ages, photos of children, and your landline and mobile phone numbers;
  • Medical Information: Medical conditions of certain residents, medications taken/required, allergies, mobility of residents, and if special equipment is needed in an emergency;
  • Animals: A list of your pets, service animals and livestock, and their names so responders are aware of them as they enter your home. Also, include the name of your veterinarian;
  • Emergency Contacts: Family members, friends or neighbors to be contacted in case of an emergency;
  • Vehicles: Make, model and license plate number in case of a motor vehicle accident.

Residents can offer as much or as little information to first responders through Smart911 as they wish.

Florham Park Police Social Media

Welcome

Message from the Chief:

 

Community Members, another school year is upon us and as such, school and traffic safety are of paramount concern to the Police Department.  In an effort to maximize the safety of the Borough’s schools, we have hired and will be placing SLEO III Officers at each of the three public schools.  Those officers will work in accordance with statutorily mandated hours requirements, therefore their scheduling and presence in the schools will fluctuate.  

Our two full time School Resource Officers (SRO’s) will remain within the schools to maintain a presence, teach DARE/Anti-Bullying related curriculum and to continue to nurture relationships with the community’s youth.  Our patrol officers will continue to randomly visit all of the Borough’s schools on a daily basis for an additional layer of security.  The Police Department’s administration will continue to maintain a close working relationship with the Board of Education, Superintendent of Schools and all of the Principals in an effort to provide the safest environment for our school system.

Parking and speeding are always issues in and around the schools.  We will have several officers patrolling and enforcing speed, parking and other traffic related violations within the school zones and residential areas that surround the same.  We ask that all residents, especially those who will be driving to the schools, to obey the posted speed limits and to park in designated spots only.

Have a safe school year!!

Joseph J. Orlando
Chief of Police
Florham Park Police Department