REPORTED POSSIBLE TOWNSHIP OF WASHINGTON CHILD ABDUCTION DETERMINED TO BE JUVENILE WHO CLIMBED IN CAR TRUNK
For Immediate Release:
February 5, 2024
Bergen County Prosecutor Mark Musella announced that the recent report of a possible child abduction in the Township of Washington, NJ on Saturday, February 3, 2024, was determined not to be a criminal matter based on the results of an investigation conducted by the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office under the direction of Acting Chief Matthew Finck and the Township of Washington Police Department under the direction of Chief John Calamari.
On Saturday, February 3, 2024, at approximately 4:42 p.m., the Township of Washington Police Department responded to a report of an unusual incident that appeared suspicious and could possibly have been a child abduction. Specifically, an area resident reported to police that they observed a vehicle pull over and its driver escort a passenger from the vehicle into the trunk of that car. The vehicle drove away, leaving the passenger in the trunk, which alarmed the witness. It was noted that there were no signs of a struggle or any distress on the part of the passenger, and the driver did not appear to flee when leaving the area. The witness believed that the driver of the vehicle was an adult and the passenger who entered the trunk was a child. Accordingly, the Township of Washington Police Department initiated an investigation.
The Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office Child Abduction Response Team was contacted later that evening and joined the investigation. Using surveillance camera footage from the area, detectives were able to locate the owner of the vehicle on Sunday, February 4, 2024. It was confirmed by detectives that both the driver and passenger were consenting teenagers, one of whom entered the trunk on purpose before exiting it shortly thereafter.
Prosecutor Musella reminds parents and teenagers about the responsibility of driving and ensuring everyone’s safety in a vehicle should always be paramount. Prosecutor Musella encourages bystanders to always report suspicious activity to police without delay, and he would like to thank the Township of Washington Police Department for its assistance in the investigation.