Morris County Gun Buyback Amnesty Program Press Conference

A Press Conference was held this morning at the Morris County Public Safety Training Academy regarding the Gun Buyback Amnesty Program which occurred this past Friday and Saturday, March 15 and 16, 2013. A Fact Sheet and photographs from the event are included with this release.

After the Press Conference Acting Morris County Prosecutor Fredric M. Knapp stated, “I am extremely pleased with the results of the Gun Buyback Amnesty Program. A great deal of effort went into this event. The Morris County Prosecutor’s Office and its partners took 600 potentially dangerous firearms off the streets of Morris County.”

Acting Prosecutor Knapp continued to state, “I would personally like to thank Attorney General Jeffrey Chiesa for his leadership and support with regard to our program. The Morris County Prosecutor’s Office and our partners are extremely gratified that the Attorney General has taken such an interest in this issue.”

Morris County Chief of Investigations William Schievella added, “This operation demonstrated, once again, the great success that can be achieved when law enforcement agencies act in collaboration with each other in their continuing efforts to protect the citizens of Morris County,”

Once again, Acting Prosecutor Knapp thanks the Morris County Sheriff’s Office, Morris County CrimeStoppers Commissioners, the Morris County Park Police, the Madison Police Department, Most Reverend Arthur J. Serratelli, St. Paul Inside the Walls, St. Peter’s Episcopal Church, the Morristown Police Department, the Florham Park Police Department, the Morris Plains Police Department and the Morris Area Clergy Council.

Any inquiries can be directed to First Assistant Morris County Prosecutor/SDAG Thomas Zelante at 973-285-6252 or [email protected].

Woman Sentenced to 3 Years in Prison for Theft

Acting Morris County Prosecutor Fredric M. Knapp announced today that the Honorable Robert Gilson, J.S.C. sentenced Kathleen Lawes, 47 years old, of Kenvil (Roxbury Township), New Jersey to 3 years in State Prison in connection with the theft of over $123,000 from a law firm where she was previously employed.

On February 1, 2013, Lawes pled guilty to Second Degree Theft.

The defendant had been employed at the law firm since 1981. From September 24, 2009 to January 10, 2012, in her capacity as legal assistant/secretary for the firm, the defendant stole over $123,000 for her personal use. The money was stolen from the attorney trust account of the firm and used for her personal benefit. As the firm’s bookkeeper, she covered up the theft for three years until her actions were discovered in 2012 by members of the firm.

Judge Gilson sentenced Lawes to 3 years in New Jersey State Prison. The defendant was ordered to pay restitution to the law firm in the amount of $3,500 and $122,874.12 to CNA Insurance.

Assistant Prosecutor Brian DiGiacomo represented the State at the sentencing.

Acting Morris County Prosecutor Knapp thanked Police Chief James Simonetti and the Roxbury Township Police Department and the Assistant Prosecutors and Investigators from the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office for the efforts resulting in today’s sentence.

Any inquiries can be directed to First Assistant Morris County Prosecutor/SDAG Thomas Zelante at 973-285-6252 or [email protected].

Fatal Pedestrian Accident in Morristown

On March 14, 2013 at approximately 7:30 p.m., a 2011 black Dodge Durango struck John Pirres, 33 years old, of Hamburg, New Jersey. The accident occurred while Mr. Pirres was crossing the street in the area of 65 Madison Avenue in Morristown. The victim was transported to Morristown Medical Center. He died there shortly thereafter. The driver of the Durango was identified by police at the scene.

The Morris County Prosecutor’s Office is seeking information from any member of the public concerning the accident. Any person with information is requested to contact Lieutenant Stephen Wilson of the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office at 973-285-6212 or Sergeant Tyrone Jackson of the Morristown Police Department at 973-538-2200. All calls will be kept confidential.

Any inquiries can be directed to First Assistant Morris County Prosecutor/SDAG Thomas Zelante at 973-285-6252 or [email protected].