'You’re looking for trouble': NJ police break up 700-person house party

Maya Rajamani
July 27, 2020 - 2:24 pm

    TRENTON, N.J. (1010 WINS) -- Some New Jerseyans are continuing to flout COVID-19-related executive orders, Gov. Phil Murphy said Monday — a day after a local police department broke up a house party with more than 700 guests. 

    Jackson Township Police Department officers responding to a flurry of 911 calls on Sunday night discovered more than 700 people attending a party at a home on Mill Pond Road in the Whispering Hill neighborhood, the department said on Facebook Monday morning. 

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    The 40-year-old homeowner, who told police he rented the home out on Airbnb, received a summons for violating Murphy’s COVID-19 executive orders, according to the department. Two party organizers from Newark, a 23-year-old woman and a 22-year-old woman, also received summonses. 

    During a coronavirus briefing on Monday, Murphy said anyone holding parties and other events that violate the state’s limits on gatherings is “looking for trouble.” 

    A teen house party in Middletown Township held on July 11 has been linked to approximately 20 COVID-19 cases, he noted. More than 20 lifeguards from two New Jersey beach towns, meanwhile, tested positive for COVID-19 after socializing together, he said. 

    “This is among us, folks. Anyone who thinks we can just put our feet up and relax and let this take its course is not paying attention,” he said. “You’re absolutely looking for trouble, no matter how old you are.” 

    New Jersey’s rate of COVID-19 transmission has “ticked up” to 1.09 percent, Murphy noted. The governor reported 446 new positive COVID-19 tests and 17 new deaths on Monday, bringing the state’s case total to 179,812 and its death toll to 13,884. 

    A total of 695 people in the state were hospitalized with confirmed or probable COVID-19 cases on Monday, 128 of whom were in intensive care units and 54 of whom were on ventilators, Murphy said. 

    And while some of those numbers came from testing backlogs, there’s “no question people are still testing positive in New Jersey,” he said. 

    “It’s undeniable there are positive cases,” he said. “We know there are flare-ups.”