Thursday, January 23, 2014

Falsification of Police Report by Wildwood Crest Police?

Count 53 of former Wildwood Crest Police Officer Thomas J. Hunt's lawsuit against the Borough, Federal Case no. 1:12-cv-06887, (on-line here) states:
"In or about May 2010, Hunt sent to the Cape May Prosecutor’s Office a complaint and materials to review in connection with the falsification of an accident report by [Sergeant Michael] Hawthorne for the son of the Borough’s Solicitor."
After reading this allegation, I submitted an Open Public Records Act request to the Wildwood Crest Borough Clerk for:
1. A copy of the motor vehicle accident report for the accident involving the Borough Solicitor's son mentioned in Count 53 of Thomas J. Hunt's suit against the Borough.

2. A copy of the "complaint and materials" that were sent to the Prosecutor's office as alleged in Count 53 of Thomas J. Hunt's suit against the Borough.
In response, I got a police report (on-line here) and was informed that I would have to contact the Cape May County Prosecutor for the "complaint and materials."

The police report is for an accident that took place on June 23, 2001--more than eleven years prior to the filing of Hunt's federal complaint.  The owner of "Vehicle 1" is Doreen C. Holton, who I have been told is the former name of Wildwood Crest Solicitor Doreen Y. Corino.  Is this true?  Doreen's car was driven by John W. Holton, presumably Doreen's son, who was 18 years old at the time of the accident.  The police report was written by Sergeant Michael Hawthorne.

Nothing in the description of the accident is remarkable.  It appears that John W. Holton struck another car in the rear while traveling at a slow speed and causing very minor damage.

Do any people in or around Wildwood Crest know of the circumstances that cause former Wildwood Crest Police Officer Thomas J. Hunt to claim that the accident report was falsified?  Or is Hunt simply full of hot air?

John Paff, Chairman
New Jersey Libertarian Party's
Open Government Advocacy Project
P.O. Box 5424
Somerset, NJ  08875
Voice: 732-873-1251
Fax: 908-325-0129
e-mail: paff@pobox.com

P.S.  Hunt's lawsuit is a procedural nightmare.  Judge Irenas' decision from December 2013 describes the procedural difficulties and is on-line here.