December 27, 2012 |
Camden County's ability to accept 911 text messages this summer will lead the state with a technology advance that will better protect residents, officials said. "This is not a replacement to the ability to call. It's another option," said Freeholder Scot McCray. "I think it's going to help every community in Camden County. " Supporters say the text service would be useful to those with speech or hearing problems, or could prove crucial in circumstances - such as a burglary - where individuals are hiding and afraid to speak while seeking help.
April 18, 2012 |
Construction is set to begin on a $50 million project to expand sewage service in undeveloped sections of eastern Camden County, including portions of the Pinelands, laying the groundwork for 10,000 new homes. The county plan - paid for with a low-interest loan from a state environmental fund - comes as the region wrestles with tight municipal budgets caused by the real estate slowdown and shrinking property values. "That part of Camden County that has remained stagnant because of water and sewer issues," said Camden County Freeholder Jeff Nash.
July 6, 2011 |
Camden County prosecutors said Tuesday a 12th person was sickened by heroin apparently laced with a powerful opiate after a rash of overdoses sent 11 people to the hospital over the weekend. Camden police are trying to find the source of the heroin - which they suspect is laced with fentanyl, an extremely powerful painkiller given to terminal cancer patients - by working with those who have overdosed. Most of them said they purchased the drug, known as "Hellfire," in the North Camden and Whitman Park neighborhoods, according to the county Prosecutor's Office.
August 3, 2011 |
Camden County will hire former Philadelphia Police Commissioner John Timoney for five days to help set up a county-run police force to replace Camden city police, county officials said Wednesday. He will be paid $7,500, plus expenses. As Philadelphia's top cop, Timoney was praised for his statistics-based model of policing and criticized for his crack-down on protesters during the 2000 Republican National Convention. Camden, consistently ranked as one of the most dangerous cities in the nation, is in dire financial straits, and a county-run police force has been pushed by local officials and Gov. Christie as a way to reduce costs and get more police on the streets.
September 14, 2012 |
A handful of sheriff's officers took their usual post around the defendant's table in a Camden County courtroom Thursday morning, ready to protect, subdue or simply watch over whoever took the seat there. This time, though, they were waiting for one of their own. Officer Thomas W. Smith did not show up to court, though, and wasn't at his home later when another sheriff's officer showed up in a patrol car. Smith, according to a letter written to his lawyer by the Camden County Prosecutor's Office, was accused of taking drugs from the department evidence room, of which he was in charge, and giving them to several Camden prostitutes in exchange for sex, often in full uniform.
August 24, 2012 |
Forging ahead with plans for a new Camden County police force, local officials have chosen two retired state police executives - including one whose brief employment in Camden ended abruptly last year - for top jobs piloting the yet-to-be-established department. Camden Mayor Dana L. Redd has asked Lanuel J. Ferguson, a former state police major, to work as Camden's public safety consultant while the city disbands its Police Department and makes the transition to the regionalized force.
June 20, 2012 |
Camden County officials are poised to bring back a 31-year law enforcement veteran, credited with using technology to fight crime, to oversee the nuts and bolts of a controversial county police plan. In 2007, Jose Cordero was named the first state director of gangs, guns, and violent crime. He consulted on a 2008 Camden reorganization plan that sought to computerize crime-fighting and increase police on the streets, among other things. Current Police Chief Scott Thomson was appointed then.
October 6, 2011 |
Camden County released a consultant's plan on Wednesday for a county police force that is projected to ultimately have nearly 400 full-time officers patrolling the streets of Camden with an emphasis on community policing. The 10-page proposal, written by former Philadelphia Police Commissioner John Timoney, was described by him and a county spokeswoman as only a framework. It doesn't outline any cost savings - one of the county's selling points early on for the regional force.
October 30, 2012 |
This fall's Camden County freeholder race is shaping up as a referendum on the future of county government, as candidates debate the planned takeover of Camden City's police department. Republicans challenging for a spot on the all-Democratic freeholder board in the Nov. 6 election have been protesting the takeover for months, arguing that the county government is overstepping its mandate by creating a county-run force and taking on services better left to municipalities. "We see [the county police]