Catching Up: Police try to make White Horse Pike in Absecon safer for pedestrians - pressofAtlanticCity.com: Absecon | Port Republic

Catching Up: Police try to make White Horse Pike in Absecon safer for pedestrians - pressofAtlanticCity.com: Absecon | Port Republic

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Catching Up: Police try to make White Horse Pike in Absecon safer for pedestrians

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Posted: Friday, December 14, 2012 12:00 am | Updated: 8:38 am, Fri Dec 14, 2012.

A weekly update of stories previously reported.

Two Months Ago: Pedestrian fatalities occur on Route 30 in Absecon

The White Horse Pike has long been a dangerous road for pedestrians to cross, and in the past few months there were four pedestrian fatalities — on Oct. 3, Nov. 4, Nov. 12 and Nov. 19.

Police have not issued any charges in the incidents, and Chief David Risley said it appears the pedestrians were at fault.

Risley said the city usually has a pedestrian fatality on the road every other year and that this was a “run of bad luck.”

The department has planned a campaign to get people to realize the dangers of crossing the road, but Risley noted there are difficulties. The city has a lot of transient and out-of-town residents who stay at the hotels on the pike, and they will often cross the road to go to stores and restaurants, he said.

“It’s very unfortunate, but there’s little we can do for people,” he said. “They need to stay off the road.”

Part of the plan will be creating a leaflet to pass out at the hotels to warn guests about not using the crosswalks at intersections, he said.

The department will have officers issue jaywalking tickets, but usually no more than a few a month, Risley said. The 25-person department does not have enough officers to be on the roadways all the time, he said.

State Department of Transportation spokesman Joseph Dee said the state has no plans for the pike but is aware of the recent incidents. The state installed a barrier in the middle of the road a few years ago, but sometimes people try to climb over it, which can be more dangerous because they can slip and fall, he said.

Eighteen Months Ago: Police investigate Hamilton Township housing complex

Hamilton Township police began investigating the Woodlands Condominium Association in Mays Landing in June 2011 for alleged misuse of funds.

On Oct. 25, detectives arrested Bonnie L. Grunow-Scheel, of Mays Landing, on theft charges. Police said Grunow-Scheel was employed at the complex and allege that she used her position to steal funds from the association from 2009 to 2011.

Police are continuing their investigation into the association, and no other details have been released, Capt. Mike Petuskey said.

After news of the investigation broke, some Woodlands residents began the process for a new election for the board of directors. The issue went to court, and a new board was elected by the residents in March.

Nineteen Months Ago: Cumberland County teacher charged with sexual assault

In May 2011, authorities arrested Derek Hildreth, then an eighth-grade science teacher at Myron L. Powell Elementary School in the Cedarville section of Lawrence Township.

Authorities alleged Hildreth assaulted five students between 1999 and 2002. He was indicted Nov. 2 on 33 counts of aggravated sexual assault, sexual assault and endangering the welfare of a child.

In January, the state Department of Education voted to remove Hildreth’s tenure, and on Nov. 30 the department voted to remove Hildreth’s elementary-schools teaching certificate pending the outcome of the criminal proceedings against him, which are ongoing.

Contact Joel Landau:

609-272-7215

JLandau@pressofac.com

Follow @landaupressofac on Twitter

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