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Highlights from the Nutley police blotter

April 3

Neighbors told police they saw two Latino males removing $2,600 worth of HVAC supplies from a Grant Ave. driveway and driving away in an older model silver minivan at 1:45 p.m. Detectives are investigating.

At 2 p.m,, police responded to Nichols Park on a report of graffiti sprayed on the walls by the waterfall. Police said the vandals sprayed the wall with two images, one of a large green elf saying, “Love me,” and the other, a painting of Santa Claus saying a derogatory comment. Also sprayed at the top of the wall was the message, “Merry Christmas.” Police contacted the Parks Department and asked them to repaint the wall.

At 2:46 p.m., a woman came to headquarters to report a suspected fraud. The victim told police someone had opened a fraudulent bank account under her husband’s name where her husband doesn’t do business.

April 2

At 8:40 p.m. employees at the Carvel on Franklin Ave. told police a man with black hair and blue eyes and wearing gray sweat pants entered the store, grabbed his genitals and asked them not to call the police when he stood outside. After he left the store, employees told police someone called asking for someone with dark hair and wearing glasses, matching the description of both employees. Officers called the caller back but they said he hung up on them. Detectives are investigating.

At 2:46 p.m. police and fire units responded to a Whitford Ave. location where a U.S. Postal Service truck, which had parked there to deliver mail, was on fire. Police said the postal employee had tried to extinguish the fire with his jacket and was burned on his right hand. He was taken to Clara Maass Medical Center, Belleville, for treatment. A postal supervisor notified police he would come to the scene to take custody of the vehicle.

At 10:54 a.m., police went to a Myrtle Ave. residence where the owner reported seeing two juveniles in the backyard jumping on a trampoline. The owner asked them to leave and they did, he said. But on April 1, police said the owner’s neighbor saw a group of kids jumping on the trampoline. When the neighbor advised them to leave, they did, police said.

At 9:22 a.m., police received a walk-in report from the victim of an apparent Sweepstakes fraud. The victim told police they sent more than $5,000 to MCP Lottery Sweepstakes via Western Union which is nonrefundable and untraceable. The sweepstakes outfit has an out-of-country phone and the envelope mailed to the victim had a Canadian stamp. Police advised the victim to check their credit report at freecreditreport.com.

April 1

At 2:14 p.m., police responded to a Prospect St. residence on a report of an activated alarm. There they were met by a juvenile at the home who told them they were in the basement when they heard a loud bang and an alarm sounding. Police checked inside and outside the house but found nothing amiss and no signs of forced entry. Police notified the juvenile’s father about the incident.

The apparent victim of an identity theft contacted police about a debt collection bill for $305.83 for equipment and services rendered by Comcast Cable which they said they didn’t order. The victim said Comcast informed them the bill was for services performed between Oct. 20, 2012, and Jan. 13, 2013 at a location in Memphis, Tenn., where they’ve not lived since 2005. Police advised checking credit monitoring bureaus about the incident.

March 31

At 1:59 p.m., police responded to a Cook Road location on a report of a burglary to an auto. Police said the owner thought they might have left their black Chevrolet truck unlocked. Police said the center console was rummaged through but nothing taken from there. However, the owner told police that a briefcase and duffle bag full of work papers were missing from the trunk. The briefcase and duffle bag were valued at $100.

At 9:59 a.m., a woman told police she was walking her dog at Prospect Ave. and High St. when she saw a dark navy blue 4-door import vehicle with older style white New York plates driven by a Latina in her 30s pass them west on High and then slow down. As she continued south on Prospect and reached the corner of Hawthorne Ave., the vehicle stopped at the stop sign. The woman driver had her window down and the dog walker could see a black man lying in the back seat “smiling’ at her. The woman told police the couple pulled out a cell phone and sped north toward High St.

At 8:56 a.m. police responded to the Nutley American Little League’s upper field on a report of criminal mischief. There they noticed a stream of water coming from behind the backstop. Police said it appeared that someone had turned on the water and had broken off the handle, causing the water to continue to run. Police alerted the Water Department about the incident.

Cops were called to Municipal Lot 2 at 1:30 a.m. on a report of a street fight. Upon arrival, officers saw two people punching and kicking each other. Police separated them but the two continued yelling at each other. Both appeared to be drunk. Police arrested the combatants, Jose Guzman, 32, and Edwin Collazzo Torres, 31, both of Newark, on charges of simple assault and fighting. Guzman was also charged with resisting arrest. Police were approached by the owner of a 2013 Toyota Wagon which, the owner said, was damaged during the fight, as evidenced by scuff marks to the front passenger side and hood.

March 30

At 12:01 a.m., police were sent to a Florence St. location on a report of criminal mischief. Police said the owner of a Ford Explorer told them someone had broken the rear window on the passenger side and that there were nails scattered around the rear tires. The owner told police that a few nights prior, the driver’s side window was broken and that, three weeks ago, the vehicle had a flat tire. All these incidents happened while the car was parked in the driveway, the owner told police.

–Ron Leir

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