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August 11, 2020

South Jersey pool party results in charges against organizers

About 250 people paid admission to attend the event, police say

Police Investigations
gloucester township pool party Thom Carroll/For PhillyVoice

Roughly 250 people were spotted at a Camden County pool party held in violation of the state's COVID-19 restrictions, police say.

The organizers of a massive pool party held Sunday in Camden County are facing criminal charges for allegedly violating New Jersey's COVID-19 restrictions on indoor gatherings.

Jeffrey Davis, 31, the owner of the property, and Marheem Miller, 28, the party's promoter, each have been charged with three counts of violating Gov. Phil Murphy's executive orders. Davis also faces another charge for allegedly maintaining a nuisance. 

Gloucester Township police said they warned Davis on Thursday that the for-profit party he was planning for his Sicklerville home was in violation of state and local restrictions. 

Officers spotted about 250 people – who had been charged admission – inside and outside his home Sunday evening. They were not wearing face masks or practicing social distancing, police said. 

New Jersey’s outdoor gatherings limit is capped at 500 people, but the state’s indoor gathering limit is a maximum of 25 people or 25% of a facility’s capacity — whichever number is lower. Weddings, funerals and memorial services, as well as religious and political activities, are exempt from the capacity limit.

Police ticketed eight vehicles for parking violations. Loud music was in violation of the township's noise ordinance, police said. 

Media Release: Owner & Promoter Charged for Having “For-Profit” Pool Party at Residence Information was received during...

Posted by Gloucester Township Police on Monday, August 10, 2020

Davis was issued a summons for littering because attendees left the street trashed after they broke up the party, police said. He also will receive an additional summons from township officials for allegedly violating a local zoning ordinance.

An investigation is continuing with referrals being made to a number of local, state and federal officials, including the Camden County Prosecutor’s Office and the Camden County Health Department.

Gov. Phil Murphy has called on residents to stop hosting house parties, as several COVID-19 outbreaks have been traced to indoor gatherings.

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