Secaucus Police investigate second pumping station incident

SECAUCUS – The Secaucus Police Department has widened its investigation into problems at the Golden Avenue pumping station after a second pumping station encountered similar problems on Monday.
Last week, in the midst of heavy rainstorms, pumps at the Golden Avenue pumping station appeared to have been manually shut off. The shut down led to early morning flooding in a few homes on Golden Avenue and Humboldt Street last Friday.
Town officials now confirm a similar incident took place Monday, Oct. 4 – another day when heavy rains had been forecast.
In the most recent incident, pumps at the pumping station near Secaucus High School again appeared to have been manually turned off. But, in a new twist, the perpetrator defecated on the floor of the pumping station, according to a police report.
The Secaucus Police Department is investigating both incidents and has interviewed area residents about they may have seen.
Mayor Michael Gonnelli said Wednesday he does not believe there are any suspects at this time. When asked, Gonnelli said he did not know whether fecal samples were collected for DNA testing should a suspect be identified later.
Until recently both pumping stations could only be accessed with a key that was kept in the Department of Public Works.
After this week’s incident, however, Gonnelli said a “smart key system” has been set up at pumping stations throughout the town.
“The keys will now tell us the day, time and individual person who used the key,” he said.
Other “surveillance,” he said, has also been set up near the stations, although Gonnelli did not elaborate on the type of surveillance that’s being used.
The mayor said the town has put in an insurance claim to compensate four homeowners who are believed to have had some property damage due to floods created by the deactivated pumps in the first incident. – E. Assata Wright

© 2000, Newspaper Media Group