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Central Jersey News from the Times of Trenton

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    The final match of next week is the showcase one, as Tottenham travels to Manchester United for a Monday night encounter

    There were two questions to be asked after Manchester City's destruction of Huddersfield Town.

    How good is City? How poor is Huddersfield?

    The answer to both is the same: very.

    Somehow, the Terriers managed to score a goal in the first half, with just 22 percent of the possession. But they were already three goals down at that point.

    The other early kickoff was much more competitive, as Burnley hosted Watford.

    Finally, Manchester United traveled to the south shore to take on Brighton & Hove Albion, a match in which the Red Devils lost last season. Could Jose Mourinho's squad take care of business this time?

    SUNDAY RESULTS 

    Burnley 1-3 Watford

    Manchester City 6-1 Huddersfield

    Brighton 3-2 Manchester United

    SATURDAY RESULTS

    Cardiff 0-0 Newcastle

    Spurs 3-1 Fulham

    Everton 2-1 Southampton

    Leicester 2-0 Wolverhampton

    West Ham 1-2 Bournemouth 

    Chelsea 3-2 Arsenal

    SUNDAY'S THREE STARS

    Sergio Aguero, Manchester City

    He opened the scoring with a chip, then added a second in the first half and a third in the 75th, as the champions cruised past Huddersfield 6-1.

    Aguero had the highest score of the weekend (and probably the whole season) with a perfect 10 rating, to earn Man of the Match honors.

    Troy Deeney, Watford

    The big striker has the Hornets off to two straight wins. He had a goal and an assist, and was the Whoscored.com Man of the Match with an 8.64 rating, as Watford beat Burnley.

    Gabriel Jesus, Manchester City

    He posted the second highest score of the season on Whoscored.com, with a 9.78. Jesus scored the second City goal.

    PLAYER OF THE WEEKEND

    Sergio Aguero, Manchester City

    A hat trick against hapless Huddersfield helped Manchester City continue to pile up the wins.

    His perfect 10 rating on Whoscored.com will not be topped all season.

    Marcos Alonso gives Chelsea late Premier League win over Arsenal

    MONDAY SCHEDULE

    Crystal Palace vs. Liverpool, 3 p.m. EDT (NBC Sports and Fubo.tv)

    TOP GAME OF WEEK THREE

    The final match of next week is the showcase one, as Tottenham travels to Manchester United for a Monday night encounter (3 p.m. EDT NBC Sports and Fubo.tv).

    Can the Red Devils bounce back after the shock loss to Brighton, and can the Spurs keep pace with Manchester City at the top of the table?

    MANCHESTER CITY WEEKLY PREMIER LEAGUE UNBEATEN WATCH

    Did Manchester City lose this weekend?

    No.

    Huddersfield Town offered no resistance, ceded the ball for almost 80 percent of the match, and sat back behind the ball in an effort to slow down the Citizens.

    It did not work, as City won easily, 5-1. 

    With its next six games against the three promoted teams of the last two seasons, do not expect this weekly watch to change.

    Sunday, October 7, the Citizens travel to Liverpool. That may be one of the first (and only) tests of 2018 for City.

    BEST OF THE WEEK

    On Wednesday, Atletico Madrid won its third UEFA Super Cup since 2010, with an extra time 4-2 win over three-time UEFA Champions League winners Real Madrid in Tallinn, Estonia.

    Diego Costa had a first minute goal, and scored his second in the 79th minute, to send the match to extra time. Saul Niguez's stunner gave Atletico the lead in the 98th minute, while Koke's 104th minute goal all but iced the victory.

    In the Premier League, AFC Bournemouth is off to a surprising six-point start, after the Cherries came back from a goal down in the second half to knock off winless West Ham United 2-1. Steve Cook got the winner, and the Man of the Match.

    Chelsea, Manchester City, Tottenham, and Watford join the Cherries with two wins from two.

    Richarlison leads the league with three goals, after his third of the season helped Everton to a 2-1 win over Southampton.

    From the EFL Championship, the Marcelo Bielsa experiment looks to be paying dividends early in the campaign, as Leeds United won its third game in a row to start the season. Leeds beat Rotherham 2-0, following a 2-1 Carabao Cup victory over Bolton midweek.

    Middlesborough sits atop the Championship with 10 points, with one more match played than second place Leeds.

    Premier League table

    Contact Sean Miller at seanmillertrentontimes@gmail.com. Follow him on Twitter @TheProdigalSean His weekly podcast, Box to Box Football, can be found on iTunes here https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/box-to-box-football/id1208561351?mt=2


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    Consider adopting a pet from a shelter or rescue.

    Petfinder, the for-profit internet company that operates the largest online pet adoption website serving all of North America, put this list together of common adoption myths in the hope that more people will adopt dogs and cats from shelters and rescues.

    "I don't know what I'm getting."

    There is likely more information available on adoptable animals than pets for purchase in pet stores. Many of the pets from rescue groups are in foster care, living with their fosterer 24/7; information on their personality and habits is typically vast. Even shelters have a very good idea about how the dogs and cats in their care behave with people and other animals.

    "I can't find what I want at a shelter."

    Not only are their breed-specific rescue groups, but some rescues and shelters maintain waiting lists for specific breeds. There are even means on Petfinder.com to be notified when certain breeds are posted for adoption.

    "I can get a pet for free from a friend or acquaintance; why pay an adoption fee?"

    The 'free pet' from a source other than a shelter or rescue group isn't necessarily free. Adoption fees usually cover a number of services and treatments including spay/neuter and veterinary checkups. Covering these costs on your own would call for spending the following estimated amounts:

    * Spay/neuter: $150-$300

    * Distemper vaccination: $20-$30, twice

    * Rabies vaccination: $15-$25

    * Heartworm test: $15-$35

    * Flea/tick treatment: $50-$200

    * Microchip: $25-$50

    "Pets are in shelters because they don't make good pets."

    Here are the main reasons animals end up in shelters or with rescue groups:

    * Owners have to move, pets not allowed

    * Allergies

    * Owner having personal problems

    * Too many, no room for littermates

    * Owner can no longer afford a pet

    * Owner's health does not allow for pet care

    While no one can say that every pet adopted from a shelter or rescue will work out perfectly, it's important to remember that misinformation about these homeless animals often keeps them from finding loving homes.

    Greg Hatala may be reached at greghatalagalleries@gmail.com. Follow him on Twitter @GregHatala. Find Greg Hatala on Facebook.


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    These 30 towns may not have the highest average property taxes, but they do have the highest property tax rates in New Jersey.


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    Opponents are hitting just .159 against him, and his 72 strikeouts in 54 innings (to just 30 walks) gives him a WHIP of 1.07.

    Many of the pitchers that have been with the Thunder this season have moved up to Triple A Scranton Wilkes-Barre.

    One look at the Rail Riders' roster shows that half the pitchers have been in Trenton this year for varying amounts of time.

    James Reeves pitched one game in Triple A this season, but other than that, he has been a mainstay out of the Thunder bullpen.

    The big lefty has pitched 31 times in relief for Trenton this season, and has been rock solid, other than a couple outings. Reeves is 2-1, with a 2.33 ERA, with the Thunder. Opponents are hitting just .159 against him, and his 72 strikeouts in 54 innings (to just 30 walks) gives him a WHIP of 1.07.

    Take away his two bad outings of the campaign, a one inning stint May 28 at Erie when he gave up three earned runs, and a 1.1 inning outing July 2 against New Hampshire when he allowed four earned runs, and his ERA for other 29 games is 1.21.

    Reeves came into the final game of the series with New Hampshire Sunday night in the sixth inning. He was trying to keep his team in the contest, after the Fisher Cats scored four runs in the first five innings off Ryan Bollinger. Reeves did his job, allowing just one hit over two innings, to keep it a three-run game.

    Thunder manager Jay Bell spoke about Reeves Sunday night after his outing.

    "He has done a really good job," Bell said. "He had a little stretch where he couldn't find that fastball command, but overall he has done a really nice job. He is a guy that we are going to count on down the stretch."

    Twin walk-off walks allow Thunder to sweep twin bill with New Hampshire

    "It felt good to be in the strike zone today, and really consistently put the ball in there, and just see what happens," Reeves said. "That is what I was trying to do. I am coming through a little bit of a rough patch with command. It was a tough loss today, but personally, it was good for me to get back in the strike zone and compete a little better.

    "I just want to compete, and be able to help the team in any way that I can coming out of the pen. This is the time of year when everybody has thrown a lot of innings. So when your name is called, you want to do the best you can, so you are not putting the weight on somebody else's shoulders." 

    The bullpen ultimately imploded over the final two frames, allowing 8 runs on seven hits, as Trenton dropped the final 12-1. But three wins from four gave the Thunder a chance in the Eastern Division, and some hope that they can beat New Hampshire in the upcoming five-game Eastern League Division Series.

    "Definitely," Reeves said. "We have a good team, a good nucleus of guys. You know baseball is a crazy game. Someone can beat the living daylights out of you one day, then it can switch really quickly.

    "I think the main thing is that you get hot at the right time, and you are playing your best baseball in the playoffs, and that is what we are going to try to do.

    Contact Sean Miller at seanmillertrentontimes@gmail.com. Follow him on Twitter @TheProdigalSean


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    The 23-year-old pitcher, who is 5'11" and weighs about 165 pounds, started this year in High A Tampa.

    When the 2018 season began, there were not many Yankees' fans that would have heard of Jonathan Loaisiga.

    The 23-year-old pitcher started this year in High A Tampa. Loaisiga pitched extremely well with the Tarpons through the first month, going 3-0 in four starts, with a 1.35 ERA. He also struck out 26 batters, and issued just one walk.

    Loaisiga was promoted to Trenton on May 3, which was another step in the spectacular rise of the pitcher. He was 3-1 with the Thunder in six starts over a month and a half (with a short stint on the 7-Day DL), before the Yankees brought him to the major leagues on June 15.

    Yankees' fans know who Loaisiga is now, after a stunning debut month in the major leagues where he went 2-0 with a 3.00 ERA. He is currently listed as the number 75 prospect in all of minor league baseball, and number three in the Yankees' organization.

    But his story was placed on hold July 3, when Loaisiga was sent down to Scranton Wilkes-Barre. He was placed on the 7-Day DL with shoulder inflammation, and six weeks on the sidelines, is now back on the mound.

    He started the game Friday night for Trenton, with a limited pitch count. He was scheduled to go either three innings (or 45 pitches), but made it through just 1.1. Loaisiga threw 41 pitches in his outing against New Hampshire, and showed glimpses of his electric fastball. He got up to 98 on the radar gun, and struck out MLB number nine prospect Bo Bichette on a 97-mph fastball with movement to open up the game.

    He threw just 22 strikes in the outing, and had some trouble with his command. After a one-plus month layoff, some rustiness was to be expected. 

    Loaisiga is just happy to be back on the mound, and hopefully back on the way to the Bronx for good.

    "Right now that's my goal," Loaisiga said through a translator. "To go there and stay there. I don't want to come back. I want more. I know that I pitched good, but I'm not comfortable. I want to go there and do more in the major leagues.

    "I feel so great. I didn't feel anything. I felt 100 percent tonight."

    Jonathan Loaisiga back with Thunder, on path back to Bronx

    Thunder manager Jay Bell spoke about his short outing Friday.

    "He wasn't sharp," Bell said. "Listen, that is not odd at all. That is pretty commonplace, but I like the way the ball came out. It came out really nice.

    "He didn't have the really good shape on the breaking ball. Changeup was just iffy, and he sprayed his fastball around. Overall it wasn't great, but it was nice to see."

    Bell was not sure how long Loaisiga would be here in Trenton. With the Eastern League playoffs just two weeks away, there is a chance that Loaisiga could get the ball for at least one start against New Hampshire.

    But there are bigger games on the horizon, especially in the Bronx. With the Yankees 9.5 games behind the Red Sox in the AL East, September will either bring an epic comeback, or preparation for a winner-take-all one-game wild card playoff.

    "I am assuming he is staying," Bell said. "I have no idea what the plans are. I am going to assume that at this point he is going to stay here with us until he builds up just a little bit, and then he will probably be on his way."

    * Luis Cessa will pitch for Trenton Monday night, in the first of two games with Hartford before the Thunder go back out on the road for their final trip of the 2018 regular season.

    "Cessa is coming tomorrow to start," Bell said after the loss Sunday to New Hampshire. 

    Cessa has been up and down with the Yankees and Scranton all season; he has been recalled six times by the Yankees, and optioned six times.

    His last outing was August 15 against Tampa Bay, where he went 3.1 innings and allowed seven hits and five runs to take the loss. With Scranton off Monday, the organization wanted Cessa to make his scheduled start. 

    Contact Sean Miller at seanmillertrentontimes@gmail.com. Follow him on Twitter @TheProdigalSean


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    This week, the victim's family filed a civil lawsuit against the officer and the city of Trenton

    The off-duty Trenton Police officer who shot and killed a man at a family gathering in the city following a funeral in 2016 was justified in his actions, the Mercer County Prosecutor's Office announced Monday.

    The officer, Sheehan Miles, was attending the gathering as well when Constantine Toe, who was 30 at the time, was shot in the hand while disarming his brother, Alfred Toe, 34, of a handgun during a dispute.

    Miles intervened and fatally wounded Alfred as the two struggled to gain possession of a handgun, on Aug. 27, 2016 on Roosevelt Street. Alfred was the aggressor, Miles was taking police action and was justified in using deadly force to protect himself, and others nearby, the office said.

    The Trenton Police Department already made that determination early last year, when they bestowed Miles with a valor medal - the department's highest - for his actions that night.

    Meanwhile, Alfred's widow, Kristi Williams, filed a 13-count lawsuit this month against Miles, the Trenton Police Department and the city.

    Williams' suit, filed by lawyer Patrick Whalen, alleges Miles was drinking alcohol at the gathering, and may have smoked marijuana too.

    The suit also claims there was no struggle between Miles and Alfred before he was shot, Miles never identified himself as a police officer, then panicked and was slow to call for backup or medical aid.

    Body camera footage from one of the first arriving officers, obtained by NJ Advance Media last year, however, shows an officer arriving in the heated moments after the shooting - Miles still with his gun drawn and handcuffing the Toe brothers on the ground.

    The raw footage also shows Trenton police donning gloves and giving Alfred emergency first aid.

    In their officer-involved-shooting report, the prosecutor's office said their investigation found Alfred grabbed his brother's gun from a car after he was asked by an unnamed man's wife to settle an argument between her husband and another unnamed man, around 9:50 p.m.

    Constantine and others tried to stop Alfred, and during the scuffle, Alfred shot his brother in the left hand. Constantine was still able to disarm his brother and placed the gun in his pocket.

    Miles heard the gunshot that wounded Constantine, but did not see the shooting, the report said.

    Miles saw that Constantine had the handgun, unholstered his department-issued handgun, and told Constantine to get on the ground, which he did, officials said. The officer then arrested Constantine, but Alfred interfered and "several witnesses" said he tried to wrestle Constantine's gun away from Miles.

    Miles then told Alfred to stand down and after "physical efforts" to move him away did not work, Miles "felt that he was losing his grip" of his gun and shot Alfred in the left chest area, the report said.

    Alfred was pronounced dead at a city hospital shortly after the incident.

    The investigation determined that Miles was justified and that the matter should not be presented to a grand jury.

    "The undisputed facts of this matter reveal that [Miles] was legally justified in using deadly force as he was acting to protect himself and others from imminent danger of death or serious bodily harm," the release stated. "This conclusion is based upon the investigative reporting, statements of officers and witnesses, radio transmissions, body-worn camera footage, photographs and physical evidence gathered and reviewed as a result of the investigation conducted by the Mercer County Prosecutor's Homicide Task Force."

    Chris Sheldon may be reached at csheldon@njadvancemedia.com. Follow him on Twitter @chrisrsheldon Find NJ.com on Facebook.


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    Looking for a safety school? Want to know your chances of getting into Princeton? Find out how hard it is to get into these New Jersey colleges.


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    1 West State St. has been home to a lot of history in the city

    The Trenton Health Team (THT) recently moved to a new location - at 1 West State Street, in the center of downtown - at an intersection sometimes called the "Corner Historic."

    "We are truly humbled to call One West State Street our new home," Gregory Paulson, executive director of THT, said in a statement.

    1 West State St. has been home to a lot of history in the city.

    The location - at the southwest corner of Warren and State streets - was where French Arms Tavern and later City Tavern stood in the pre-Revolution late 1700s, and for a brief time was the meeting place of Congress.

    It's where the New Jersey delegation ratified the U.S. Constitution in 1787, and hosted George Washington and his family on his way to his inauguration to become the first President of the United States.

    For many years, starting in the 1800s, it was home to bank buildings, most recently a Wells Fargo regional office.

    Last year, Maestro Technologies, which specializes in big data solutions and web security, took possession of the building.

    "We intend to ignite Trenton with start-up culture, incubator space, training facility, lab and much more. Stay tuned as we write the next chapter in Trenton's history!" Maestro Managing Director Kamal Bathla said in announcing the THT's arrival on the fourth floor.

    THT's new office space includes a mural painted by Leon Rainbow, a local Trenton artist. The painting features several landmarks, including the Capital Building and Battle Monument.

    The mural was commissioned by THT to illustrate the organization's vision of a healthy, vibrant capital city.

    "Our goal is to improve health outcomes for Trenton residents through strong community partnerships, and based in our new historic location, honor the history of Trenton and the State of New Jersey," said Paulson, of the THT.

    THT is a nationally-recognized community health improvement collaborative serving the six zip codes of Trenton.

    The collaborative is an innovative partnership among Capital Health Hospital, St. Francis Medical Center, Henry J. Austin Health Center, and the Department of Health and Human Services of the City of Trenton.

    The vision of THT is to make Trenton the healthiest city in the state. Its mission is to transform healthcare for the city by forming a committed partnership with the community.

    For more information, visit www.trentonhealthteam.org, or follow THT @trentonhealth.

    Follow NJ.com on Twitter @njdotcom. Find NJ.com on Facebook.


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    Check out the games to keep an eye on at the tail end of the summer.


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    "We will prevail, we will regroup and rebuild," the shop said in a statement Watch video

    When Nick Smith got a tattoo of the DC Comics superheroine "Big Barda" on his leg in June, he didn't imagine it would be the last time he stepped into Kiss of Ink Tattoo's Trenton storefront.

    "I'm still in shock," Smith said. "I've been there five times. They're super friendly and super considerate. They're a part of the community.

    Kiss of Ink, on Hamilton Avenue, was gutted in a two-alarm fire early Tuesday morning, which was reported around 4:47 a.m., Trenton Fire Department Battalion Chief Louis Bainbridge said. The cause of the fire is still under investigation, he said later Tuesday.

    "My whole life just came down today," owner Chris Matisa said.

    "Everything that was part of the history of our shop -- it's gone," Matisa said in an interview Tuesday afternoon. "We had 22 years there. All of our awards, our equipment, it's all gone."

    "I tattooed parents, and then my son tattooed their kids. We watched people grow up. Then, they'd become parents and bring their kids in for their first tattoo," he said.

    City firefighters were able to bring it under control about an hour later. The shop is across the street from Engine Co. 7.

    "The firehouse had to call us to tell us our building was on fire," Matisa said. "Our ADT alarms never went off."

    Expo preview

    Smith, 20, of Dayton, was just one of several customers who recalled fond memories of the small, well-known tattoo shop.

    Dozens of customers showed support and shared tattoo pictures on the shop's Facebook page when the parlor announced news of the fire.

    Kiss of Ink, which has other locations in New Jersey and Virginia, say they hope to reopen at a new location in the near future.

    "We will prevail, we will regroup and rebuild," the shop said in a statement.

     

    The artists at the Trenton shop were well-known for creating a friendly atmosphere and holding conversations with customers to help ease the pain while inking them, customers say. One artist even landed a spot on Oxygen's reality competition series "Best Ink."

    Smith, among others who frequented the shop, hopes to follow the tattoo artists wherever they go next, whether it's a new Kiss of Ink location or a different parlor.

    "I trust those guys," he said. "They've always had a great vibe. It's not just about the money. They're passionate about every tattoo."

    Matisa said he's adamant about keeping the shop in Trenton, and has already been in touch with a real estate agent to get a new space on the same street.

    "We always followed the belief that Trenton was good to us for a lot of years, so it'd be ignorant to turn our back when Trenton needed us the most," Matisa said. "It's a sad day for us, for sure."

    Gianluca D'Elia may be reached at gdelia@njadvancemedia.comFollow him on Twitter @gianluca_delia. Find NJ.com on Facebook.


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    Gov. Murphy issues a executive order banning the 2018 bear from state land.


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    They are charged with shooting a man in Fort Lauderdale

    Two suspects charged with shooting a man outside a downtown library in Fort Lauderdale, Florida earlier this month were arrested in Trenton Monday.

    suspects.jpgShawn Smith, left, and Ronnie Shuman, police photos 

    Shawn Smith, 29, and Ronnie Shuman, 42, both of Fort Lauderdale, were arrested in Trenton on Monday, officials said.

    Smith and Shuman are accused of a shooting that wounded a man outside the Broward County Main Library on Aug. 7 following an argument. The incident caused nearby businesses to shelter in place, and traffic issues as police searched for the gunmen, police said.

    Fort Lauderdale police did not elaborate on how investigators tracked the pair to Trenton, why they were in the Garden State or where exactly they were detained. Fort Lauderdale and Trenton police were not immediately available for comment about the arrest late Tuesday.

    Both men were lodged in the Mercer County Jail Tuesday, records show.

    Kevin Shea may be reached at kshea@njadvancemedia.com. Follow him on Twitter @kevintshea. Find NJ.com on Facebook.


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    The Yard Goats, Rumble Ponies, and Fightin Phils are still between seven and 8.5 games behind Trenton.

    There was plenty of action before the Trenton Thunder's final game of the home stand Tuesday night.

    It was almost like a carnival atmosphere, with The College of New Jersey dance team performing on the field, the Paw Patrol on the concourse, and multiple teams honored.

    One of those teams that got a chance to receive applause was the Hamilton/Northern Burlington Babe Ruth 13-year-old All-Star team. The team made an unbeaten run through the South Jersey tournament, all the way to the Mid-Atlantic Regional final, before it fell to Broomall/Newtown (PA).

    It was a fun summer for the players, who got to cap it all off with a visit to Arm & Hammer Park Tuesday, where they watched Trenton fall 7-3 to Hartford.

    "My grandparents take me to a lot of games, and it is always fun to come back here," Nathan Mains, who is a catcher on the team and will attend Hamilton West next year, said. "It was so nice to be honored before the game. I have always seen teams on the field, and I finally got to be there."

    The two aces of the staff, James Watson and Ryan Boyd, will head to Northern Burlington in a couple weeks, for their first days as high school students. But there is still some summer left, and both were happy to be out at another baseball game before school starts.

    "This might be my 10th time here this year," Boyd said. "It is pretty cool to be honored. I always see people do it, and I kind of wanted to do it. It was a really fun run for us. We want to go a little further next year."

    "It was great, playing with all my friends before we go to high school," Watson said. "It was awesome, and even better to make that run. My dad used to work here, so we come to the Thunder games a lot, though not as much this year.

    "This is who I watched all these years, so this is really cool."

    Jonathan Loaisiga's short outing Friday first step back to New York

    * After a great start to the penultimate home stand of the season, the Thunder lost the final three games, including a two-game sweep by Hartford.

    The Yard Goats, Rumble Ponies, and Fightin Phils are still between seven and 8.5 games behind Trenton, so the Thunder will most likely clinch a third straight playoff berth sometime this weekend.

    But at 68-59, Trenton's summer struggles continue. The Thunder, who are 22-25 since July 1, will hit the road to face Reading for two games, then travel to Hartford for three. Trenton will then head to Altoona, for a four-game set that is a potential Eastern League Championship Series preview, with both teams set to make the playoffs.

    Altoona is a half game behind Akron in the Western Division, and six games ahead of third place Harrisburg. The Curve and Thunder met last season in the finals, which was won in a three-game sweep by Altoona.

    * Trenton's final regular season home stand will be as it has been recently, and will be again next season: a four-game Labor Day weekend series with Reading.

    * After Monday's 4-0 loss to open the series with Hartford, the Thunder have been shut out eight times this season. Seven of the eight shutouts have come at home.

    In that game, the Thunder also matched a season low for hits (in a nine-inning game) with three.

    The offense has struggled for much of the summer, and Trenton now finds itself in the bottom two or three of the 12-team league in many of the offensive categories.

    Contact Sean Miller at seanmillertrentontimes@gmail.com. Follow him on Twitter @TheProdigalSean


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    New Jersey's five dioceses have had to tap into their insurance policies and reserves to pay alleged victims of sexual abuse by priests.


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    The 30-year-old Mercer County man stole from a business in Dunellen while conducting an investigation

    A tax agent for the state Department of Treasury stole money from a Middlesex County business during an investigation, authorities said. 

    Timothy Bailey, 30, of Hamilton, Mercer County, is charged with a fourth-degree count of theft, the Middlesex County Prosecutor's Office said in a statement Tuesday.

    Former N.J. treasury warehouse supervisor convicted of stealing surplus equipment

    Bailey, a probationary employee, stole "an amount in excess of $200" from an undisclosed business in Dunellen on Aug. 16, officials said. 

    Bailey, a special agent trainee for the state treasury department's taxation division, was suspended with pay following his arrest. Bailey's annual salary is $48,100, according to state pension records. 

    He was sworn in in December. 

    Anyone with information about the ongoing investigation into Bailey is asked to call Det. Kevin Schroeck of the Middlesex County Prosecutor's Office at 732-745-3927 or Special Agent in Charge Charles Giblin of the New Jersey Department of Treasury at 609-588-5017.

    Jeff Goldman may be reached at jeff_goldman@njadvancemedia.com. Follow him on Twitter @JeffSGoldman. Find NJ.com on Facebook.

     

     

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    The well-known Trenton tattoo parlor was gutted by a fire early Tuesday morning Watch video

    The fire that devastated a Trenton tattoo shop Tuesday morning has been labeled suspicious, the Trenton Police Department said Wednesday morning.

    Police have not announced any suspects or motive in the fire that destroyed Kiss of Ink, a shop that has been on Hamilton Avenue for 22 years.

    The investigation into the blaze - reported at about 4:47 a.m. - is still active, Trenton police spokesman Capt. Stephen Varn said.

    Chris Matisa, the shop's owner, fears the fire was the work of a "disgruntled former employee" who had allegedly sent threatening messages to other workers at the shop. 

    Matisa said the shop has given police surveillance footage from Kiss of Ink's neighboring business, Cruz Deli & Grocery, and says it shows a male walking past the building several times, and eventually, dropping a lighter and running away.

    Expo preview

    "The guy who did it should know it's only a matter of time before (the police) come looking for him," Matisa said Wednesday afternoon. 

    In the midst of the investigation, Matisa is eager to reopen Kiss of Ink as soon as he can. "If I had it my way, I'd be back open in 48 hours," he said.

    The shop has associated locations in New Jersey - in Flemington, Cinnaminson and Hamilton - as well as shops in Virginia.

    Matisa said he's already replacing equipment and talking to real estate agents about potential new spaces in the city, and that he's thankful he has a chance to rebuild his business and keep it in Trenton. 

    "Think of the people this could have happened to who could've lost more than an empty building," he said. "I lost memories and a rental space, but I'm glad we didn't lose anybody."

    "We're on a rocky road, but we can do it. We'll overcome." 

    Gianluca D'Elia may be reached at gdelia@njadvancemedia.comFollow him on Twitter @gianluca_delia. Find NJ.com on Facebook.


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    Stephen C. Varn, the department's chief of staff and spokesman, was promoted to captain

    Eleven Trenton police officers were promoted Monday evening during a ceremony at City Hall.

    Stephen C. Varn, the department's chief of staff and spokesman, was promoted to captain.

    The new lieutenants are: Brian Egan, John Zappley Jr., Brian J. Suschke and Christopher Kolodziej.

    And making the rank of sergeant: Marc W. Berkeyheiser, Nathan B. Bolognini, John T. Harbourt, Brian S. Jones Jr., Christopher Kurfuss and William Salhanick.

    Interim Police Director Pedro Medina presided over the ceremony, pinned the badges on the officers and made remarks. Mayor Reed Gusciora also spoke at the event.

    Also in attendance, and thanked for his service, was former police director Ernest Parrey Jr., who Gusciora replaced when he was elected in June.

    Parrey, a retired Trenton captain, served as director for Eric Jackson's 2014 to 2018 term as mayor.

    Kevin Shea may be reached at kshea@njadvancemedia.com. Follow him on Twitter @kevintshea. Find NJ.com on Facebook.

     

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    And hopefully not a 'slow burn.'

    Vaudeville is the name given to a genre of variety entertainment that flourished in North America from the early 1880s until the early 1930s. Programs could include singers, dancers, actors performing Shakespeare, magicians and the form of entertainment remembered most from the period, comedy.

    Kenneth McIntyre 1938 ac.jpgThe Three Stooges clown with model Barbara Bradford Mann in Atlantic City in 1938. 

    Acts like the Marx Brothers, Ritz Brothers and George Burns and Gracie Allen got their start in vaudeville, as did the Three Stooges, who would epitomize the genre known as 'slapstick' comedy

    Slapstick: split a long stick or strip of wood down the middle but not all the way; when hitting another performer with it, a loud striking sound is made without causing (too much) pain to the strike.  (source: seattleshakespeare.org)

    MORE: Vintage photos around New Jersey

    Because the comedians were performing to a large audience that might not be maintaining respectful silence, their volume was loud and motions were exaggerated. One of the most well-known comedic motions would be the double-take:

    Double-take: looking at something or someone, coming to sudden realization, then looking at it again in surprise.       (source: goodmagic.com)

    Hopefully, some of these photos might also make you come to a realization and look again in surprise. And below are links to some other galleries you'll enjoy.

    Vintage photos from N.J. that might make you do a double-take

    Vintage photos of 'sketchy' N.J. activities

    Vintage N.J. photos that deserve a second look

    Greg Hatala may be reached at greghatalagalleries@gmail.com. Follow him on Twitter @GregHatala. Find Greg Hatala on Facebook.


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    The LGBTQ community reports having experienced discrimination in healthcare settings, ranging from being treated disrespectfully by health-care givers to being barred from visiting family members in the hospital.

    When New Jersey's health commissioner, Dr. Shereef Elhanal, was a student at Harvard Medical School not that long ago, teachers offered no training on how to approach the unique health issues related to the LGBTQ community.

    Earlier this summer, the state's top medical official visited the PROUD Family Health Center at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital in Somerset.

    The visit, which highlighted the center's work with transgender individuals, was both a symbol of how far the Garden State has come in addressing the needs of LGBTQ residents and a reminder of how much more we need to accomplish.

    Healthcare services and facilities for this population are becoming more prevalent here, as evidenced by the recent opening of an Asbury Park program to provide testing for HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases.

    The initiative, launched by the Prevention Resource Network of the Visiting Nurse Association of Central Jersey, received a grant from the state Department of Health. It will soon add primary care and behavioral health, as well as other services focusing on the needs of transgender individuals.

    The expansion of LGBTQ services is coming not a minute too soon. More than half the members of this population report having experienced discrimination in healthcare settings, ranging from being treated disrespectfully by health-care givers to being barred from visiting family members in the hospital.

    This LGBTQ office is first of its kind in New Jersey

    In a recent survey conducted by Lambda Legal, one transgender patient was pressured to undergo a genital exam - when the problem was a broken rib.

    Medical schools have a vital role in assuring these incidents don't happen. Administrators need to respond to this realty by adding appropriate courses to their curricula.

    "People in the LGBT community deserve to be treated with dignity and professionalism so they can openly discuss their health issues without fear of being judged or mistreated," Elnahal said when he toured the PROUD facilities.

    Opened in 2016, the program offers non-judgmental and welcoming care to transgender patients who not only grapple with specific health issues, but also encountered discrimination and even hostility when they sought medical care in the past.

    In addition to providing hormone therapy and monitoring, PROUD offers primary medical care for children and adults, referrals to specialty services, and health education and counseling to patients who might otherwise be reluctant to seek them out.

    For too long, safe spaces like this have been hard to find for the state's 30,000-plus transgender residents. Thankfully, that's changing. Even more encouraging are signs that the Murphy Administration is receptive to these changes, and will offer its support in the coming months and years.

    Bookmark NJ.com/Opinion. Follow on Twitter @NJ_Opinion and find NJ.com Opinion on Facebook.

     

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    The 36 midfielders on the verge of big seasons


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