South Plainfield Labor Day Festivities Featuring Gov. Murphy Were Cancelled because of Pipe-bomb device

A South Plainfield, Middlesex County resident has been arrested and charged on Monday, Sept. 2 with the possession of a destructive pipe-bomb device, found near the route of a Labor Day Parade that the governor was supposed to attend. The suspect is in police custody.

 Gov. Phil Murphy and first lady Tammy Murphy were supposed to participate in the Labor Day festivities, set to start at 10 a.m.  The parade and related activities were cancelled by South Plainfield officials on Monday morning.

No direct threat was made to the parade or the governor, but all activities were nevertheless cancelled because of the close proximity of the explosive devices to the parade kick off. The official described the suspect as a “rogue individual” in his 50s who liked explosives

Thomas G. Kaiser, 55, of South Plainfield was arrested and charged with one count of possession of a destructive device for an unlawful purpose in the second degree and one count of possession of a destructive device in the third degree. It is anticipated that additional charges will be forthcoming.

On September 1, 2019, an investigation began in Monmouth County when a suspicious package with a destructive device was left at Donovan’s Reef in Sea Bright. An investigation by the Sea Bright Police Department and the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office led to the South Plainfield residence of Thomas Kaiser.During the investigation it was learned that there were other destructive devices near his home, located in the vicinity of the start of the South Plainfield Labor Day Parade prompting its cancellation.

An investigation was conducted by the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office, the Sea Bright Plainfield Police Department, the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office the South Plainfield Police Department, the New Jersey Office of Homeland Security and Preparedness, the FBI, the New Jersey State Police Bomb Squad and various K-9 units.

The investigation is ongoing and continuing. Anyone with information is asked to contact Detective Daniel Chernavsky of the Sea Bright Police Department at (732) 842-0010,  Detective Shawn Murphy of the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office at (732) 803-5406, or the South Plainfield Police Department at (908) 755-0700.

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