Newark’s Mayor Baraka and Public Safety Director Ambrose Announce Rollout of Hope One Mobile Unit

Offering Addiction Recovery Services, Mental Health Services and Housing Assistance

Newark Mayor Ras J. Baraka and Public Safety Director Anthony F. Ambrose announced the rollout by the Newark Police Division of the Hope One Newark Mobile Unit today.

Hope One Newark’s Mobile Unit, which follows the pattern of the successful Hope One program developed by Morris County Sheriff James Gannon, will operate in partnership with the Center for Addiction Recovery, Education and Success (C.A.R.E.S.), Integrity House, Mental Health Association of Essex and Morris Counties and the Newark Department of Health and Community Wellness.

Services to be provided through Hope One Newark include training on the use of Narcan and distribution of Narcan kits, along with referrals to detoxification and rehabilitation facilities, referrals to mental health services and transportation to drug treatment facilities. The unit will also provide identification cards to the homeless so that they can obtain services, including housing assistance.

Mayor Baraka, Public Safety Director Ambrose, Chief of Police Henry, and Morris County Sheriff James Gannon

“Putting addiction recovery services, mental health services and housing services on the streets, where the people who most need them can access them, is what this program is all about,” Mayor Baraka said. “Hope One Newark offers a lifeline to individuals trapped by their addictions or afflicted by homelessness because it brings the services directly to them. We are taking this proactive approach because some individuals may find it difficult to walk into a traditional facility on their own for information or treatment.”

“This is a home run for the City of Newark,” Director Ambrose said. “When it comes to issues like addiction, homelessness and mental illness, we cannot arrest our way out of these problems. Hope One Newark will offer assistance by providing easy access to invaluable resources including Narcan kits, ID cards and referral information for rehab centers, shelters, mental health care programs and housing assistance for anyone who needs them. No questions asked.”

The mobile unit will be stationed at various locations throughout the city to offer services in various neighborhoods.

Contact:  Lieutenant Ronald Glover (973) 710-2531 or Public Information Officer Catherine Adams (973) 733-3995

Morris County Sheriff warns of Continuing Phone Scams

The Morris County Sheriff’s Office is advising the Morris County community to be aware of a continuing phone scam that has been making the rounds again targeting residents of Morris County as well as communities nationwide.

Sheriff James M. Gannon said, “In the most recent calls, the caller and/or message will use an agency number for their Caller ID and will identify themselves as an employee of the Morris County Sheriff’s Office.  The caller says the resident has an outstanding debt and demands a prepaid credit card or the resident will be arrested.  The caller states if the resident cannot pay, they must turn themselves in and may provide an address of a section of the Sheriff’s Office.  In the event these fraudulent calls are received, residents should never give their personal or financial information over the phone, nor should they arrange to meet someone to provide a prepaid credit card. The Morris County Sheriff’s Office will never solicit methods of payment and/or personal identifiers over the phone.”

In 2017, and in January and May of this year, similar scams surfaced posing as officers seeking personal information and Green Dot MoneyPak cards for false warrants, civil process fees, overdue IRS payments and non-appearance for jury duty.  Residents should notify their local authorities should they receive these calls.


Any suspicious calls regarding the Morris County Sheriff’s Office can also be directed to 973-285-6600 during the day and 973-285-2900 after hours for verification of agency personnel.

Crime Prevention Tips to Help Avoid Falling Victim to this Scam:

  • Legitimate law enforcement agencies will not tell people to provide money card information to avoid arrest.
  • Be suspicious of callers who demand immediate payment for any reason.
  • Never give out personal or financial information to anyone who emails or calls you unsolicited.
  • Never wire money, provide debt or credit card numbers or Green Dot Money Pak card numbers to someone you do not know.
  • Remember that anyone who has the number on a Green Dot Money Pak card, has access to the funds on the card.
  • If you have received a phone scam call, try to gather names, the phone number and location given, and report it to your local police.

Report tips and remain anonymous by contacting the Morris County Sheriff’s CrimeStoppers at 973-COP-CALL or from your mobile device. NO ONE WILL ASK YOUR NAME!

Active Shooter Training for Law Enforcement

Morris County Sheriff James M. Gannon, the Morris County Chiefs Association, Morris County Department of Law and Public Safety, and the Jersey City / Newark Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI) hosted a two (2) day training for school threat assessments in preventing school active shooter incidents.  A team combined of seventy-five (75) members of law enforcement, education and mental health, were instructed by one of the world’s foremost experts, Dr. Marisa Reddy Randazzo, Ph.D. (Sigma Threat Management Associates) on how to assess and manage potential school violence. 

Following the devastating shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, in Parkland Florida, Sheriff James M. Gannon called for a meeting with Madison Police Chief Darren Dachisen, President of the Morris County Police Chiefs Association (MCPCA), and his executive Board of Officers. He was very concerned that although Morris County Law Enforcement had become very adept at drilling, and planned response for active shooters, an approach towards prevention of school shootings was long overdue.

They established a working group and developed a plan. The primary stated focus of the group was the development of a threat assessment framework that could be usable by each Morris County Police Chief, School Superintendent and Principal (and potentially throughout the state).

The group collaborated on the establishment of a Threat Assessment Working Group and set out to recruit collegial input from subject matter experts from varying disciplines. Sheriff Gannon knew from his years of working on the Joint Terrorism Task Force that the United States Secret Service (USSS) was the unparalleled experts in the field of threat assessment; because of the very nature of their work. The group also recognized the need to include the mental health field and, in particular, focused on school psychologists. Finally, it was collectively expressed that inclusion of victims and their families would be important.

Mark McKevitt, Special Agent in Charge of the Newark Office of the United States Secret Service immediately signed on as a member of the panel and offered resources from the USSS including the help of the former Research Specialists in Washington DC who authored several studies on School Violence. Follow up calls to the Chief Research Psychologist and Research Coordinator at the USSS Threat Assessment Center Dr. Marissa (Reddy) Randazzo, Ph. D. resulted in an acceptance to consult with Morris County on the threat assessment model. Dr. Randazzo also introduced us to Gene Deisinger, Ph. D.  Dr. Deisinger was hired by Virginia Tech University to design a threat assessment program following the tragic events in Virginia. He has also developed threat assessment models for the Virginia Center for Campus Safety. Each has committed their contributions on this project.

Chief Wagner of the Denville Police Department arranged for a conference call with two experts that he has formerly partnered with; Dr. Melissa A. Louvar Reeves, Ph. D. NCSP, LPC, the immediate Past President of the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) and Michelle Gay, Co-founder/Executive Director of Safe and Sound Schools. Michelle Gay has toured the nation speaking on the topic of school shootings ever since the tragic day when her beautiful daughter Joey was killed in the Sandy Hook School Shooting.

The team began a partnership with Sigma BTAM (Behavioral Threat Analysis Management) to create a usable threat matrix and immediately went to work.

At the recommendation of County Administrator John Bonanni and Morris County Department of Law and Public Safety Director Scott DiGiralomo, the Morris County Board of Chosen Freeholders and the Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI) jointly funded the development of: A Guide for Enhancing the Safety & Well-Being of Schools & Communities in Morris County, NJ & the Jersey City/Newark Urban Area Security Initiative. This one hundred (100) page guide is the basis for the training offered on November 27 and 28, 2018. At the training, a team combined of seventy-five (75) members of law enforcement, education and mental health, were instructed by one of the world’s foremost experts, Dr. Marisa Reddy Randazzo, Ph.D. (Sigma Threat Management Associates) on how to assess and manage potential school violence.

Sheriff Gannon said:

“I am extremely pleased that we were able to concertedly fast-track this lifesaving training before year’s end; to me it was imperative to act swiftly.” 

“Morris County does it right in so many ways, discovering, reporting and interrupting school and campus shootings is a paramount goal of law enforcement, mental health and education. Today that partnership has a shared platform and philosophy on which to work; we will certainly be more adept, and more in tune with each other’s disciplines, and therefore better equipped to thwart loss of life.”

“Together we hope to stop the actor before the first shot, and to be ‘left of bang’ on the timeline.”

Chief Ciro Chimento said:

“As the representative to the Morris County Police Chiefs Association, I wanted to emphasize our shared desire to work in union with our local school leaders; by doing so we can save the lives of students, teachers, and even the potential shooter. This has been a great collaboration from the start.”