Central Jersey News Today

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9/17/2014
A man is killed in an explosion and house fire in East Brunswick
Authorities say one man is dead after an explosion and house fire in the Lawrence Brook section of East Brunswick late Tuesday night.  Investigators combing the wreckage of the house at 4 Agate Drive – in a neighborhood on the north side of Route 18 near the Tower Center and Turnpike – found the body of a man Wednesday, but have not released his name pending confirmation of his identity, and notification of his family.  Police and firefighters were dispatched to the home just before 11:30 Tuesday night, and found it completely engulfed in flames.  Neighbors said there was an explosion.  The Middlesex County Prosecutors Office is handling the investigation, which is ongoing.
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9/17/2014
Prosecutors unveil new evidence in 1991 slaying of Timothy Wiltsey, as his mother pleads not guilty during first court appearance in New Jersey
Prosecutors in Middlesex County have unveiled at least one new piece of evidence they say led them to charge a former New Jersey woman with the murder of her 5-year-old son, Timothy Wiltsey, 23 years ago.  46-year-old Michelle Lodzinski pleaded not guilty at her arraignment Tuesday in state Superior Court in New Brunswick, her first appearance in a New Jersey courtroom since her extradition from Florida last Friday.  But until Tuesday, authorities had not said what new info led them to accuse her of Wiltsey's 1991 killing.  Judge Bradley Ferencz was told by Assistant Prosecutor Scott LaMountain that about three years ago, investigators realized they had items found with Wiltsey's skeletal remain in Edison 11 months after his alleged disappearance, ...
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9/17/2014
New Jersey hospitals were generally unprepared for Superstorm Sandy, report says
A new federal report finds hospitals in New Jersey - as well as New York and Connecticut - were not prepared to meet the challenges of Superstorm Sandy.  The study from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Service's Inspector General Office  released Wednesday is based on surveys of 172 hospitals hit hard by the storm in October 2012.  It finds that hospitals had surges in patients that were unexpected as well as power outages and problems with backup generators and transportation to get employees into work.  It says nearly 90 percent of the hospitals faced "critical challenges."  In many cases, the issues had been identified in citations for deficiencies issued in the years before the storm.
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9/17/2014
Blue Acres closes on the first of seven flood-prone properties in East Brunswick ravaged by Sandy
The state DEP has announced it's closed on the first of seven flood-prone homes in East Brunswick through the Blue Acres program.  For many residents, Superstorm Sandy was the last straw, as the storm surge in the Raritan Bay backed up into the nearby South River.  DEP Spokesman Bob Considine says the program, which buys homes and pre-Sandy values, has been a long time coming.  "They were really looking for something like this before Sandy hit because those homes were damaged by Irene and other storms," says Considine.  He adds that the seven homes along Squire Street in East Brunswick all are in a perfect location.  Blue Acres homes are raze and turned into parkland, and the vacant lots are ...
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9/17/2014
Union County man disappears just before being convicted of sex crimes against a child
Authorities are searching for a Union County man they say disappeared shortly before he was convicted of sex crimes against a young boy.  Union County prosecutors say 47-year-old Nikolaos Katogiritis fled the area sometime during the two days that jurors deliberated the charges.  The panel found him guilty yesterday of sex assault, child endangerment and lewdness.  The former Elizabeth resident now faces up to 10 years in state prison when he's sentenced.  Prosecutors say Katogiritis approached the then 12-year-old boy in the shower area of pool locker room in August 2012.  They say he exposed himself to the boy and started touching himself, then encouraged the boy to do the same and asked to perform a sexual act on him.  ...
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