A Lakewood couple endangered five children by hosting a party that violated a state emergency ban on large gathering amid the COVID-19 outbreak, authorities charged.
Police broke up a crowd of 40 to 50 people, including children, who were gathered Sunday on the front lawn of an Alamitos Drive home, they said.
They charged the property owners -- Eliezer Silber, 37, and Miriam Silber, 34, -- with five counts of child endangerment (one for each minor), while issuing summonses for violating Gov. Phil Murphy's executive order banning large geaetherings, Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley Billhimer and Lakewood Police Chief Gregory Meyer said.
Along with the increase of coronavirus cases in New Jersey are growing numbers of people charged with crimes directly tied to the pandemic, authorities said.
Lakewood has drawn the most police attention as people continue to defy the order by holding large events.
Police have had to break up no fewer than a half-dozen Orthodox Jewish gatherings, including weddings, in town while ticketing the hosts.
Authorities have also had to deal with anti-Semitic threats made to the community.
Billhimer vowed to continue prosecuting "any individual who defies or breaks the law, state of emergency or otherwise. Everyone must respect and follow the law."
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