The Minnesota Twins announced Friday they demoted Voorhees, N.J. native Devin Smeltzer to Triple-A Rochester and activated former New York Yankees right-hander Michael Pineda (right knee tendinitis) from the 10-day injured list. That brings to a close Smeltzer’s first stint in the majors. When he returns, he will still be searching for his first MLB win. Smeltzer dazzled in his debut last week, throwing six shutout innings but coming up with a no-decision in the Twins’ 5-3 win at Target Field in Minneapolis, Minn. He threw 69 pitches, 53 of which were strikes as he pounded the plate with his three-quarters delivery. Smeltzer gave up just three hits while striking out seven Milwaukee Brewers batters. N.J.’s Mike Shawaryn STILL waiting for MLB debut with Boston Red Sox: Could today be the day? The Boston Red Sox called up right-hander Mike Shawaryn last week from Triple-A Pawtucket before the rain-shortened three-game series with the New York Yankees. One week … [Read more...] about N.J.’s Devin Smeltzer’s MLB dream put on hold by Minnesota Twins
Justice j s khehar
New Jersey’s historic move away from cash bail in 2016 slashed the state’s jail populations, leaving fewer people locked up awaiting trial because they couldn’t post small bail amounts, according to a new report from the state judiciary.But the program that props the system up is going broke, and state leaders currently have no plans to fix it. The report was delivered Tuesday to the governor and state Legislature as they hammer out the state’s budget for the coming year.It contains long-awaited data on the racial and gender makeup of the state’s jails, as well as a first-ever comparison of the old cash bail system to the new one.Starting in 2017, New Jersey all but eliminated cash bail, moving instead to a system where judges can order defendants jailed based in part on a risk assessment that weighs the suspect's criminal history and the charges they face.Critics of the new system — including some local police and prosecutors, as well as the bail … [Read more...] about N.J.’s bail reform did not cause a spike in crime, report says. But the program is going broke.
EDITOR’S NOTE: On April 3, NJ Cannabis Insider will host an all-day live event, featuring industry leaders and the key voices who will shape the industry. Tickets are limited. More information.The new marijuana legalization bill in New Jersey was unveiled for the first time on Wednesday night, the pinnacle of more than a year of work by lawmakers to bring legal weed to New Jersey. Over the next week and a half, those lawmakers will be hitting the phones and trying to swing enough votes to legalize marijuana in New Jersey. The vote is tentatively scheduled for March 25.And while it’s clear from the bill that its sponsors have worked hard to address a number of concerns from legislators — like expungements and taxes — a few issues remain that could hamstring the debate. New N.J. legal weed bill finally on its way to lawmakers. And this one could actually get approved. N.J. lawmakers, at long last, have revealed their plan to bring legal weed to the state. Read … [Read more...] about If N.J.’s new legal weed bill doesn’t pass, these 3 things could be to blame
The Force Report is a continuing investigation of police use of force in New Jersey. Read more from the series or search your local police department and officers in the full the database. New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal was feeling the heat just weeks after taking office.The Asbury Park Press had published an investigation that found dozens of cases of cops with troubled histories who were allowed to stay on the job. The state needed a response, so in short order, Grewal announced a new, mandatory system requiring police departments to monitor officers for certain behaviors and flag them for review.The intention was simple, Grewal said: Be more proactive, identify problem behavior and intervene before a situation gets out of control.As it turns out, however, that new system has a big blind spot.The greatest authority granted a police officer is the right to harm another person, yet Grewal’s new system required a mandatory review only after a punch, kick or other use of … [Read more...] about N.J.’s system to flag potentially abusive cops has a huge hole in it
What's a turtle worth, anyway? On the black market, a single turtle of the right species can pull in hundreds or even thousands of dollars. If it's an exotic species, that single turtle can become a small part of the multi-billion dollar international wildlife trade. The recent arrest of a Pennsylvania man who allegedly smuggled diamondback terrapins, a coveted turtle species, out of New Jersey to sell them online has put a spotlight on the Garden State's place in the international wildlife trafficking network. He's accused of smuggling 3,500 turtles and faces 35 years in prison The illegal wildlife trafficking industry is estimated to be worth $19 billion annually according to TRAFFIC, a leading non-governmental organization for tracking the wildlife trade. "It's a huge problem," said Lt. Zane Batten, a conservation police officer for the New Jersey Division of Fish and Wildlife. "It's a clandestine market: people don't know about it, people don't hear about it, people don't … [Read more...] about Here’s how N.J.’s turtles fit in the multi-billion dollar illegal wildlife trade