NEWS, SPORTS, COMMENTARY, POLITICS for Gloucester City and the Surrounding Areas of South Jersey and Philadelphia

Maritza Cantres-Acevedo, reported missing
MISSING 17-year-old Syniah Jackson, Camden

OPINION: Is A Handicap Imaginary?

Screenshot 2023-12-10 at 21.01.20
There are two No Parking Handicap signs in front of the CVS Store located on South Broadway. According to CNBNews columnist Dorothy Philbin, a few months ago on Labor Day, a Gloucester City Police SUV was parked in a way that blocked the handicapped parking spots, as well as prevented an elderly man from exiting his car. This image of the site was obtained from Google Street View.

GLOUCESTER CITY, NJ (December 11, 2023)--On Labor Day, I went to the CVS on South Broadway but couldn't park in either of the two handicapped parking spots.  There was a police SUV parked caddy-corner blocking the handicap parking spots and blocking an elderly man from exiting his car.  I noticed that the SUV was marked "SCHOOL RESOURCE."  This was Labor Day, the school year had not started yet so there was no reason for this man to be driving a city vehicle while running a personal errand (he came out of the store wearing street clothes and carrying his purchases.)
The same day I sent an e-mail to Brian Morrell, Police Chief/City Administrator, and explained what happened.   After three months I am still waiting for a reply.  Later, I wrote an article in Cleary's  Notebook, but still no reply.
Friends call me "Secret Squirrel."  If there is information to be found, I will find it.  There are two police officers and one grade three officer assigned to the schools.  I traveled to the high school (making a point to stay on Market Street so as to not trespass.) The officer assigned to the high school drove a sedan.  Next on to Cold Springs.  Same story.
Finally, I went to the Middle School, again making sure to stay on Market Street.  BINGO.      That officer drives an SUV.  I made sure to verify that SCHOOL RESOURCE was on the back of SUV in exactly the same spot as I saw it on Labor Day.  That's the car!   License plate 23686 MG.  I went back on Friday, December 8th at the beginning of the school day.  I wanted to see if the officer working there was the same person I saw on Labor Day or if the city car was being used by Someone other than the officer.  I even went back later in the day, near recess, but I never saw the car or the officer.  Maybe he was taking a sick/personal day.
 This problem didn't need to go the way it did.  Mr. Morrell could have answered my e-mail and promise to look into the problem.  But he didn't.  He could have called CVS and asked for their video tapes but there is no indication he did.  He could have told me that there is a special form which must be completed for a complaint against an officer, but he didn't.
"Secret Squirrel" is not about to stop now.  I never stop until I get an acceptable answer which, in Gloucester City, could be years or could be never.