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Few Details on Gilford Avenue Shooting, Neighborhood Reacts to Incident

Response to the shooting on Gilford Avenue last week

Few new details have been released on a that sent one victim to the hospital after gunfire broke out at a birthday party.

A 21-year-old's birthday party on Gilford Avenue late Friday night shuttered the street for police investigation through the following day.

Police have not released any names or addresses in the incident, where a man fled to a neighbor's, who called police. The incident was north of Route 37 on Gilford Avenue.

Toms River Police Chief Michael Mastronardy said the shooting took place on a section of Gilford Avenue located north of Route 37, not in Gilford Park which is located south of Route 37.

“This happened north of Route 37,” in an area known as Windsor Park, said Chief Mastronardy.

Like sounding names of “Gilford Avenue” and “Gilford Park” have also led to considerable confusion about the location of the shooting.

Mastronardy said that like any part of town, incidents of crime occur in Gilford Park but that it is “not in the interest of fairness,” to associate incidents of crime with Gilford Park; when in fact the shooting happened north of Route 37, in a different part of town.

Francis Arleus has lived on Alfred Lane, which is parallel to Gilford Avenue, for forty years. Arleus questions the safety of her neighborhood.

Arleus was one of the few residents actually outside of her house in the afternoon of yesterday’s July fourth holiday.

“Its amazing that they’re so brazen today,” Arleus said, in reference to the recent shooting.

“The neighborhood has changed,” she said.

Thankful for lighting over her house when she returns home for work late at night, Arleus does not feel secure in her own neighborhood. Arleus said the shooting last week was not a freak incident for her part of town.

Arleus blames the economy for rising rates of crime.

Mastronardy said the online commentary about Gilford Park in response to the Gilford Avenue shooting is “a response to something that didn’t happen in that area and has no reflection on Gilford Park--it was Gilford Avenue.”

Mastronardy said that the home where the shooting occurred was “a nice, well kept home.”

Gary Pintler, who resides in the part of Toms River identified as Windsor Park, disagrees.

“I don’t think its a generally safe neighborhood,” said Pintler.

Pintler said the strangers coming into town for summers are responsible for many incidents of crime.

Pintler said his house was broken into twice during the summer, both times during the day. He has since installed an alarm system.

“No one has money, I don’t blame them,” Pintler said.

Last Sunday, the road reopened and the shooting remained under investigation.

Toms River Police, the Ocean County Prosecutors Office and the Ocean County Sheriff's Department sent personnel to investigate.

Anyone with information may contact Sgt. Carlos Trujillo-Tovar of the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office at 732-929-2027, or the Toms River Township Police Department at 732-349-0150.

Toms River Patch Editor Catherine Galioto contributed to this story.

Catherine Galioto July 08, 2012 at 02:53 PM
We took it down until police could confirm some details.
. July 08, 2012 at 03:55 PM
You are so right. People have been poor before. These break ins are people looking for merchandise they can sell for drug money.
grace July 08, 2012 at 09:09 PM
gilford park used to be such a cute area to live in..next to island heights close to water gee....and by the way chief crime is all over toms river not just the north of rt 37..sort of a put down if you ask me...where do you reside chief?
Barb. Bladey July 08, 2012 at 10:41 PM
I have been here for many years. Gilford Park has always been trash. Period.
Lakewood Reporter July 18, 2012 at 01:53 PM
The shooter was arrested and charged. He escaped from Lakewood Police when he was removed from the municipal lockup. The search continues...

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