Five from Medford charged in Lacey off-road incident
A Medford man faces criminal charges after allegedly hitting an Ocean County Sheriff's officer with a Jeep during a trespassing incident in Lacey Township.
Benjamin Sabo,23, is charged with eluding, obstructing the administration of law and trespassing, connected to the August 13 confrontation with police on the grounds of Lacey Materials, on Lacey Road in Forked River.
Members of the Off-Road Multi-Jurisdictional Woods Enforcement Detail, patrolling around 10 PM, and found an individual powering an all-terrain vehicle on a road on the property leading to the Tuckerton Railroad bed, police said.
As officers wrote out a summons, Sabo approached in a Jeep Cherokee with several occupants, drove around task force officers, and, with no way to move past the rest of the patrol, stopped, police said.
When squad members approached the Jeep and identified themselves, Sabo threw the car in reverse, hitting the Sheriff's officer astride a quad, police said. Offiers caught up with the Jeep about a quarter-mile into nearby woods.
The officer sustained no serious injuries, authorities said.
Sabo's bail was set at $50,000. He was also cited for road offenses including reckless driving, leaving the scene of an accident, failure to report an accident, and an open container of alcohol in a motor vehicle. His Jeep was impounded.
Karl Werosta, 18, Nicholas Glaesman, 19, Maxwell Burt, 24, and a 17-year-old boy, all of Medford, were charged with trespassing. Police said that the investigation is still open, and that more charges are pending.
Criminal charges are accusations. Defendants are presumed innocent unless, and until, convicted in a court of law.
The Off-Road Multi-Jurisdictional Woods Enforcement Detail, which that day consisted of Lacey police, a County Sheriff detail and New Jersey State Troopers, has patrolled perimeters of wooded areas all summer in an effort to reduce trespassing by quad and all-terrain vehicle riders, and for violations including driving under the influence (DUI), underage alcohol consumption, illegal drug use and criminal mischief.
Assigned officers travel the beat on ATVs, sport utility vehicles, and Humvees.