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Serving South Jersey

Gloucester Township Press Conference on New Bill Package to Combat Youth Violence and Public Disorder

In response to recent incidents of public disorder and youth violence, Senator Moriarty, Assemblyman Hutchison, and Assemblyman Miller gathered today at Veterans Memorial Park with Gloucester Township Mayor Dave Mayer, Chief Dave Harkins, Monroe Township Chief Brokowski to announce a significant legislative effort aimed at addressing these issues. The 4th Legislative District introduced a new bill package to reduce instances of public brawls and disorderly conduct.

The legislative package includes three bills:

1. A4651 Hutchison/S3508 Moriarty: This bill establishes penalties for certain conduct related to public brawls and disorderly conduct. It aims to hold individuals accountable for participating in or encouraging disruptive behavior during public events.

2. A4652 Hutchison/S3507 Moriarty: This bill creates a new offense for inciting a public brawl and upgrades penalties for disorderly conduct under specific circumstances. The goal is to deter individuals from provoking or participating in violent confrontations.

3. A4653 Miller/S3506 Moriarty: This bill mandates the Attorney General to develop a training program for crowd management. It also requires the provision of resources to local law enforcement for managing large gatherings, flash mobs, or pop-up parties, ensuring they are better equipped to handle potential disturbances.

Assemblyman Hutchison highlighted the significance of his sponsored bills, stating, "The measures we are introducing today are crucial for creating new charges to hold individuals accountable for inciting and organizing public brawls. Our community's safety is our top priority."

Assemblyman Miller also underscored the importance of preparedness and training for law enforcement. "Providing our local law enforcement with the necessary resources and training to manage large crowds is essential for maintaining public order and safety," Miller said.

The need for this legislative action became evident following an incident during Gloucester Township Day earlier this month. During a drone light show, over 500 teens and young adults gathered, leading to multiple fights that resulted in minor injuries to several individuals, including law enforcement officers. The proposed bills represent a comprehensive strategy to address the root causes of youth violence and public disorder, aiming to create a safer environment for all community members.

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