Clark and Garwood Week in Review
Our top news for the week of May 27, 2012.
When Kent, 22, a 2007 Arthur L. Johnson graduate, was found dead at his home on Hawthorne Drive in Clark last week, his childhood friends, were heartbroken to get the call they had long feared might come. Clark Police say the official cause of Kent's death is still pending autopsy reports; Kent's friends say it was a prescription drug overdose, likely a combination of OxyContin and Xanax. In our story, Kent's friends open up about the "the best kid they knew" and the disease of addiction.
Clark Mayor Sal Bonaccorso says a spray-painted Matt Kent memorial inside the Clark Reservoir near Madison Hill Road will be removed. The large painting which reads "RIP Matt Kent" appeared on Wednesday, about a week after the death of Kent, 22, a 2007 Arthur L. Johnson graduate. Friends say Kent died following a prescription pill overdose. Bonaccorso says the painting appears on a pumper station that is still owned by the Middlesex Water Company inside the the Clark Wildlife Preserve section of the reservoir's Robinson branch. The reservoir itself is Union County property. The painting can be seen by drivers and passersby outside the reservoir on Madison Hill Road.
A keen-eyed neighbor helped Clark Police catch two burglars. Around 2:30 p.m. on May 22, after receiving a call from a neighbor who witnessed suspicious activity at 389 Carolina Street, police were able to arrest Michael Gardner, age 35, married, an insurance agent of 16 Prescott Turn in Clark and Justin Wolf, age 23, single, a carpenter of 515 Shackamaxon Drive in Westfield for burglary and theft. "The men took jewelry and were stopped about a block and a half from the crime scene after we got that call," Clark Police Captain Al Scherb told Patch. Bail was set at $15,000 for both men who were subsequently transported to the Union County Jail. Det. Walter Merfert was the arresting officer.
The Dunkin' Donuts shop on the corner of Raritan Road and Walnut Avenue on the Cranford-Clark border has been shut down indefinitely due to health violations, local officials confirmed Thursday afternoon. According to Monika Koscova-Jencik, Cranford's health inspector and a registered environmental health specialist, Dunkin' Donuts was closed earlier this week after health officials learned that the shop had begun renovating the building without obtaining the proper permits. In addition, work was being done near exposed food.
Clark resident and Union County Sheriff's Officer Anastasio Anastasatos assisted in the delivery of a baby girl at the County Courthouse in Elizabeth Friday afternoon. Anastasatos, a nine-year veteran, worked alongside Elizabeth Fire Department EMTs and other sheriff's officers to deliver the baby at 1:35 p.m., four minutes after the emergency call was received, according to Union County Sheriff Ralph Froehlich. A crowd gathered from the different levels of the rotunda and watched and cheered the arrival of the very healthy new born, who was transported to Trinitas Medical Center for care. The mother was in good condition and was also sent to the hospital.