Seaside Heights Armed Robbery Conviction Upheld on Appeal
The 17-year prison term handed to Peter Rusch of Seaside Heights for armed robbery in 2011 will stand, says an appellate panel.
Information from Ocean County Prosecutor Joseph Coronato's office says that the appeals court Friday upheld the term given to the 27-year-old for his conviction stemming from an incident under the Seaside boardwalk in 2009 that played out over two days.
According to details from the case, Rusch lured a stranger under the boards on July 23 of that year on the pretense of a cocaine deal, then held a knife to his throat and taking an estimated $60 to $100 in cash. The victim escaped, but investigators said Rusch had unfinished business.
The next day, the two encountered each other on the boardwalk again and Rusch attacked him a second time, prosecutors said.
A jury convicted Rusch of armed robbery and unlawful possession of a knife in June 2011. He was sentenced the following September and required to serve at least 85 percent of the time under New Jersey's No Early Release Act, along with five years of parole supervision.
Rusch is eligible for parole consideration on January 4, 2024, prosecutors said.