TOMS RIVER – A man found in the parking lot of the police station with a loaded gun has been charged with a number of weapons offenses, possession of CDS (Controlled Dangerous Substance), unlawful possession of a loaded shotgun, and defiant trespassing, according to police.
On Monday, July 8, 56-year old Joseph Kelly of Toms River made his way to the Toms River Police Headquarters and parked his vehicle in a restricted “police personnel only” parking area. According to police, Kelly contacted a Toms River Township EMS employee to tell them that he was at the police department to turn himself in.
When officers responded to the parking lot, they found Kelly seated inside his vehicle with a loaded shotgun across his lap and a German Shepard in the car with him. Kelly was taken into custody without incident. The dog was uninjured and brought to the Toms River Animal Facility to be cared for.
After the police encounter with Kelly at headquarters, officers responded to his Egret Drive residence to check on the safety of any other individuals that might be in the home. Police found nobody in the residence but a search yielded various types of firearms and ammunition that were left out in the open throughout the home.
Police obtained a warrant and seized firearms, ammunition, and what were later determined to be an inert training device and an opioid in the form of a powder. The New Jersey State Police Bomb Unit and the New Jersey State Police Hazardous Materials Teams were summoned to the location to assess the safety of the items being seized.
Also found in the residence were a 500 lb. pet pig and several turtles which were taken by Toms River Animal Control for safekeeping while Kelly awaits his hearing.
After a medical assessment at Community Medical Center, Kelly was released and lodged in the Ocean County Jail pending a hearing.
The investigation was led by the Toms River Police Uniformed Patrol Division, as well as our Detective Bureau. Assisting were the New Jersey State Police, Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office, Toms River Office of Emergency Management, Toms River Animal Control Personnel and Silverton and East Dover Fire Companies.