GLOUCESTER CITY, NJ (Gloucestercitynews.net) (June 24, 2019)—Last month we received a tip about a home in the 800 unit block of Bergen Street being raided for allegedly operating a motorcycle chop shop at the property. Our source said one person at the property supposedly pointed a gun at a resident living in that block. That the property was the scene of several fights between groups of young men.
We contacted Gloucester City Police Lt. Steve Burkhardt, spokesman for the department, for a response.
In a prepared statement Burkhardt said, "You are inquiring about a home in the 800 unit block of Bergen St. which is a rental property that our officers have responded to (12) times since March 2019. Most of the calls were for nuisance/quality of life complaints. During this time period, (10) summonses have been issued to the tenant and landlord for nuisance and rental registration violations. Our officers did respond to the residence on March 27, 2019, for a fight involving juveniles. Two juveniles were taken into custody, one of whom was in possession of a pellet gun. In May 2019 city detectives responded to the residence during the course of a motorcycle theft investigation. As a result, three stolen motorcycles were recovered at the residence. Two were stolen from Gloucester City, one from Maple Shade. That investigation is still ongoing; however, two suspects have been charged and charges are pending against a third suspect."
Wanting to know more about the nature of the nuisance calls and quality of life complaints CNBNews submitted an OPRA request for those details. The information below was received from that request.
MARCH 5, 2019—Officer Gregory Coxe investigated a call from the Housing Department about a roofing contractor working on a home in the 800 unit block of Bergen Street. Housing Department stated there was a roofing company taking a roof off of that property and throwing the trash onto people’s property. I spoke to the supervisor Juan Garcia and advised him to clean up the neighbor’s property.
EDITOR'S NOTE: The following document was redacted by the police
March 25, 2019- On this date at approximately 1803 hours, units responded to an incident involving the suspect who witnesses stated pulled what they believed to be a firearm from his backpack. According to XXXX, XXXX was holding a backpack with one hand and was repeatedly pulling what appeared to be a gun.
XXXX stated he did not see the whole gun but did see the black handle and believed it to be gun. Mrs. Chinen stated she observed XXXX reaching into a black backpack and repeatedly pulling out what she believed was a gun. Ms. Chinen stated XXXX then punched XXXX about the face, with a closed fist, and then pulled the backpack from him. Ms. Chinen stated she placed the backpack on her porch and observed the gun inside the backpack. Ms. Chinen stated after further inspection, she observed the gun to be a pellet gun. Ms. Chinen and XXXX said XXXX did not point the gun at them.
XXXX was arrested for disorderly conduct. He was processed, charged, and released to the custody of his mother, Lisa Busbee.
MARCH 26, 2019--GCPD(Gloucester City Police Department) headquarters, Ms. Busbee stated she would not allow her son, XXXX to give a statement.
Michele Williams, XXXX sister, stated she didn’t feel comfortable siting on an interview. Ms. Williams stated their father was in Michigan. XXXX mother refused to leave work.
On March 26, 2019--I did take a taped statement from Terry Chinen.
Ms. Chinen stated XXXX came to her residence and was followed by a group of juveniles. Ms. Chinen stated she went outside and observed XXXX fighting XXXX Ms. Chinen stated she then observed reaching into a black backpack on her porch and observed the gun inside the backpack. Ms. Chinen stated after further inspection she observed the gun to be a pellet gun.
For more information see the taped statement.
On 3/26/19 I did a taped statement from XXXX.
XXXX stated his friend fought XXXX at an unknown location and then fought an unknown African American male, now identified as XXXX at Three Corner Park. XXXX then stated after the fights, his friend, XXXX came to his residence. XXXX advised XXXX that he had fought XXXX and XXXX and that they followed him to XXXX residence.
XXXX stated XXXXX came to his front door XXXX stated XXXX was holding a backpack with one hand and was repeatedly pulling what appeared to be a gun. XXXX stated he didn’t see the whole gun but did see the black handle and believed it to be a gun. XXXX stated he did strike XXXX about the face and took the backpack from XXXX and threw it on his front porch.
For more information, see the taped statement. This incident was captured with my BWC.
On the above date and time, units were dispatched to the above location for a group of juveniles fighting, one armed with a handgun. On location, I spoke with the suspects XXXX and XXXX who stated they were jumped in the area of Gloucester City Liquors. After the altercation, they went to a property in the 800 unit block of Bergen Street to confront XXXX and XXXX, the juveniles who allegedly assaulted them. Ptl. B. O’Donnell spoke with XXXX and XXXX and XXXX mother, Terry Chinen. They stated XXXX and XXXX came to the residence to fight XXXX and XXXX and XXXX had taken a handgun out of his backpack. The juveniles fought and during the encounter XXXX and XXXX took XXXX backpack, which contained the handgun. Ptl. B. O’Donnell took possession of the backpack and located the gun, which was an air soft pistol. I transported XXXX to police headquarters in vehicle #13, and Ptl. Lessig transported xxx in vehicle #11. Mrs. Chinen allowed XXXX to give a taped statement to Det. Hopkins; see supplemental report. XXXX was charged with possession of a firearm and disorderly conduct. Juvenile intake was contacted and advised xxx would need to be transported to their facility to receive a bracelet, where he would then be released to a parent. XXXX mother, Terry Bucknor, was contacted and advised of the situation. She did not have a vehicle and was currently at work and could not take custody of XXXX at the Camden County Youth Correctional Facility. CCYCF was advised and Ofc. Redman stated they would house XXXX at the Youth Emergency Services Shelter.
XXXX was arrested for possession of a handgun (airsoft) and disorderly conduct. He was processed and turned over to Camden County Youth Detention Center.
MARCH 27, 2019-On this date, the owner and landlord for the property located in the 800 unit block of Bergen Street, Pristine Investments LLC, was sent notice in reference to issues with the tenants of the property.
On 3/26/19, police responded to this residence for a large fight. One of the juvenile tenants, xxx was involved in the altercation at the property. In order to head off any continuing issues with the tenants, the landlord was sent notice advising they needed to send notice to the tenants.
A copy of this notice is attached to RMS. Housing was also sent notice of the incident.
APRIL 6, 2019—Disposition-Caller observed several males exit the residence, enter a vehicle and put on masks. The vehicles then drove off.
Note-This incident captured on BWC.
On 4/6/19 at 18:20, we received an anonymous call for suspicious activity at a property located in the 800 unit block of Bergen Street. Upon arrival I spoke to the caller XXXX who stated several black and Hispanic males between the ages of 17 to mid-20’s exited the property and entered a gold Honda Odyssey and black Chevy Trailblazer with unknown tags. Once inside the vehicles, the males all put on bandanas covering their lower faces and drove off towards Brown Street. A search of the area for the vehicles was negative at this time. A POI (person of interest) was broadcast by Central advising surrounding districts of the incident should they have any incidents with the vehicles.
APRIL 10, 2019—On 4/10/19 at 18:38, I observed numerous cans of trash and debris on the side and front of the property located in the 800 unit block of Bergen Street. Police had responded to this residence due to several party goers at the residence riding mini cycles through the neighborhood. The landlord for the property, Pristine Investments LLC, was issued summonses for trash out front of the property and property maintenance. Both summonses were issued pending a 4/30/19 GCMC court date. Housing was sent notice of the pending violations.
APRIL 17, 2019—Today at 16:33, (4:33 PM) I viewed an abundance of trash on the side of the 800 unit block of Bergen Street, near the front of the house. There were garbage bags and other trash piled on, and next to a trash can, causing an unsightly appearance to the nearby residences. The primary is tenant, Terry Chinen, and owner of the property, Pristine Investments LLC, were issued summonses for GCO:66-17A. The summonses were mailed to their listed addresses with a GCMC date of 4/30/2019.
MAY 6, 2019— Ptl. Springler and I conducted surveillance on the property in the 800 unit block of Bergen Street due to complaints of dirt bikes and motorcycles driven without helmets and in the street. At approximately 2200 hours, (10 PM) a dark colored street bike which was being driven by a black or Hispanic male without a helmet or visible registration pulled onto Bergen Street and into the driveway of the property under surveillance. We pulled up and called out to the male who immediately fled west in the library lot and north onto Railroad Avenue. We turned our police vehicle around and last observed the male getting onto 676 North. A pursuit was never initiated. We returned to our surveillance location and the bike never returned.
MAY 7, 2019—Inv. Ryder and I conducted surveillance on the Bergen Street property between the hours of 2030 and 2200, no motorcycles or dirt bikes coming or going, there was no traffic in or out of the residence. Terry Chinen arrived home with her children at approximately 2045 hours. Shortly thereafter she approached our vehicle and took photographs and stated she was calling an attorney for harassment. She said something about us being racist as she was walking away. A short time later she approached our vehicle again however was much more pleasant this time and was advised we weren’t targeting her house, just doing our jobs to address specific issues in the area.
PD Case Disposition-Landlord and tenants issued summonses for rental violations and maintaining a nuisance.
Note-On May 22, 2019--At 11:00, the owner and landlord for the Bergen Street property, Pristine Investments LLC (SC036149-50), as well as the responsible agent, Ari Goldner (SC036147-48) were issued summonses of maintaining a nuisance property as well as CO violations for the property. The primary tenant, Terry Chinen (SC036144-45) was also issued a summons for maintaining a nuisance and rental registration violations. All summonses were issued pending a 5/28/19 GCMC date.
Ms. Chinen and the landlord had been charged on 5/19/19 for maintaining a nuisance due to the numerous issues at the property. Since that charge, police determined that the tenants and their guest have been operating a “chop shop” out of the property on 5/21/19. Police tracked a stolen motorcycle to the property and were able to recover three stolen motorcycles and motorcycle parts from the basement of the property. It was also determined that Ashley Petrucelli (SC036146) was residing in the property not on the CO or rental registration. (2019-07659). Housing was sent notice of the pending charges.
Note-On 5/19/19 at 16:00, the owner and landlord of the Bergen Street property, Pristine Investments LLC (SC036143) as well as the responsible agent, Ari Goldner (SC036142) were issued summonses for maintaining a nuisance property. The primary tenant, Terry Chinen (SC036141) was also issued a summons for maintaining a nuisance. All summonses were issued pending a 5/28/18 GCMC court date.
Police have determined this property to be a nuisance property due to numerous incidents involving the tenants and their guests causing undue annoyance and alarm to the surrounding neighbors. Police have responded to the property for the following incidents:
3/26/19-Fight call at property involving the tenants and guests. 3/27/19-Landlord sent notice of fight and advised to send notice to tenants. 4/6/19-Neighbor complaint and suspicious activity. Several males exited property, got into vehicles and put bandanas over their face to conceal their identities. Males then tracked to the Bergen Street property where they were observed entering the driveway to the property and speaking with the tenants. Males fled upon seeing police vehicles. Tenant was contacted at the scene and advised to have the males cease their behavior. 4/10/19-Several males on motor bikes speeding around property causing annoyance and alarm to neighbors as well as endangering other motorists and pedestrians. Males were tracked to the Bergen Street property where they were observed entering the driveway to the property and speaking with the tenants. Males fled upon seeing police vehicles. Tenant was contacted at scene and advised to have the males cease their behavior.
4/10/19-Quality of life issue. Numerous articles of trash and debris observed in front and side of property. Landlord and tenants were cited for the ordinance violations. 4/14/19-Trash was not removed, and more trash, debris, rubbish and waste were placed in front and side of property. Landlord and tenants were cited for the ordinance violations. 5/6/19-Detectives were investigation neighbor complaints at the property due to males on motorcycles and street bikes continuing to cause issues at the property. Police observed males on bikes enter the driveway. Males fled from police upon being confronted.
5/8/19-Landlord was contacted (Tiz) and advised of the ongoing incidents however no response was received advising that they would address the matter. 5/19/19-Tenants dog was running at large attacking another dog and injuring it. Tenants allowed the dog out knowing they did not have a fenced yard, nor did they chain or contain their dog. Tenant, Terry Chinen, was contacted, initially denied that the dog was hers but later did admit to the dog being hers and took responsibility for the incident. Ms. Chinen was issued several summonses for the animal complaint.
Housing was sent notice of the pending charges. A copy of the CO application supplied by Housing as well as the notice sent to the landlord are attached to RMS.
Editor's Note-The address of the property was included in the answer to our OPRA request but because the case is still under investigation we left the exact address out of our report.
Today (June 23, 2019) our source told us about another incident which allegedly occurred at this property last week during the day. According to the source, there was a fight between a man and a woman. The woman ran out of the house screaming with a man chasing her carrying a gun. Police responded in force. When asked about this latest incident police said that because it was a domestic violence crime they were not allowed to comment.
Those charged are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
Below is a photo of an airsoft pellet gun. The image was found on the internet. A similar airsoft pellet gun was mentioned in the above article several times.