BRICK – County, local and federal authorities are investigating death threats made on social media towards the mayor of Brick Township.
Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley Billhimer released a statement Friday that a full probe is underway involving their office, the Brick Township Police Department and the FBI regarding threats made on Twitter towards Mayor John Ducey that were posted Thursday.
While no details were released by the Prosecutor’s Office, the Asbury Park Press, who had been tagged in the original tweet, reported the threat said “time to kill” and listed Ducey’s home address. The originating Twitter account with the handle @DoctorLock and the name Daniel Roberts has been suspended.
In hopes to find out more information regarding security measures, Brick Police Sergeant Keith Donnelly said “This is an active investigation and I cannot release any additional information.”
The dustup began this week with Ducey finding himself at the center of controversy on the social media platform. An anti-Semitic tweet from a resident concerned about the quality of life at parks caused an uproar when Ducey replied to it.
Critics were angry that Ducey didn’t call out the anti-Semitism in the tweet, where the resident said “can we please do something about our parks and beaches. They are being invaded by the Hasidic and Orthodox Jews and being ruined. Our tax paying residents are being forced out while politicians sit and do nothing.”
Ducey’s response to that tweet said: “Our parks security has started already. Just call police with any problems and they will send them out.”
After that, Ducey found himself with excessive local and even regional media coverage.
Ducey tweeted on Wednesday “This twitter feed (and the world in general) is no place for bigotry or hateful comments. They are hurtful and divisive. They are condemned by me and all who are trying to make a difference in the world. Look for the good in you and others and the world will be a bettter place.”
Lakewood Mayor Ray Coles sent Ducey a letter and according to a number of local media reports including Patch and The Lakewood Scoop, Ducey said his words were taken in the wrong context and everyone can use the parks.
Micromedia/Jersey Shore Online reporter Judy Smestad-Nunn tried to reach Mayor Ducey for comment on both the original issue and the latest with the threats. According to officials at Brick Town Hall, Ducey is on vacation until the end of the month.
We will bring you more on this story as soon as we can talk to the mayor himself. Stay with Jersey Shore Online for updates.