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23 of 24 Child Sexual Predators Caught in Toms River Last Week Released Under Bail Reform Law

23 area men who used games like Fortnite to lure children for sex are back on the street.

TOMS RIVER-Last week, the New Jersey Office of the Attorney General announced twenty four men arrested for attempting to lure teenage girls and boys, aged 14-15 for sex through social media.  The public was led to believe these sick individuals were pulled from society and placed in jail, where they could not further their sexual desire for young children.

That never happened, according to jail records at the Ocean County Jail.

Today, only one of those men remains in custody.   The rest were free to leave once being processed by law enforcement officers without bail, under New Jersey’s new bail reform, which eliminates cash bail for nearly every offense.

For Ocean County, things can only get worse, as Ocean County Prosecutor Joseph Coronato will not be the one overseeing their prosecution.

New Jersey law allows them to sit at home and return to work as they await trial for their devious and perverted sexual desires with children.

According to the Attorney General,  these child predators used the following chat apps such Kik, Skout, Grindr, Whisper, Omegle, Tinder, Chat Avenue, Chat Roulette, Wishbone, Live.ly, Musical.ly, Paltalk, Yubo, Hot or Not, Down, and Tumblr.

Arrests also have been made involving the gaming apps Fortnite, Minecraft, and Discord. Attorney General Grewal urged parents to familiarize themselves with these apps and warn their children about sharing information with strangers.

Most of the defendants in Operation Open House were arrested at an undercover house in Toms River – a four-bedroom, residence – while a few were arrested at other meet-up locations or were stopped in their cars after driving to the vicinity of those locations. Those who went to the undercover house allegedly expected to find their victims home alone. Instead, they were arrested upon arrival, sometimes by teams that included the very officer who portrayed the child they targeted for sex.

The only person picked up in Operation Open House that still remains behind bars is Thomas Blumensteel, 47, of Manchester, N.J. Blumensteel is a hotel manager and a registered sex offender. He was sentenced to three years in New Jersey State Prison in 1997 for aggravated criminal sexual contact for sexually assaulting a boy, 13, whom he was supervising as a church counselor. He was also charged with Attempted Sexual Assault on a Minor (2nd degree).

With the departure next week of Joseph Coronato as Ocean County’s Prosecutor, prosecution of these sexual predators will now fall into the hands of Bradley Billhimer, a lawyer who has spent much of his career defending criminals, including sexual offenders.

This month, Billhimer was nominated by Governor Phil Murphy to replace Coronato who has earned himself a reputation in the community of being a dedicated prosecutor, eager to prosecute criminals to the fullest extent of the law.

Billhimer has no prior experience working the other side of a trial in a courtroom.

The other defendants were released subject to, “stringent pre-trial monitoring conditions, including at a minimum reporting regularly to Pre-Trial Services staff and prohibitions from using the internet except for work or having any unsupervised contact with children under 18.”

Under bail reform, even though these men were caught red-handed trying to lure children for sexual encounters, they did not score high enough to be held in custody under bail reform.

The following individuals were arrested last week using video games such as Fortnite and chat apps to lure children for sex.

  1. Mina G. Beshay, 27, of Monroe Township, N.J. (Girl, 15) Beshay is a security guard. Additional charges: Attempted Debauching Morals of a Child (3rd degree), Attempted Showing Obscene Material to a Minor (3rd degree).
  1. Christopher Vargas, 29, of Toms River, N.J. (Boy, 15) Vargas is a registered nurse.
  1. Joshua Rauter, 31, of Little Egg Harbor Township, N.J. (Girl, 14) Rauter is a municipal public works employee. Additional charges: Attempted Debauching Morals of a Child (3rd degree), Attempted Showing Obscene Material to a Minor (3rd degree).
  1. Joseph Martin, 35, of Seaside Heights, N.J. (Girl, 14) Martin is unemployed. Additional charge: Attempted Sexual Assault on a Minor (2nd degree).
  1. Richard Hoffman, 23, of Mays Landing, N.J. (Girl, 14) Hoffman is a firefighter and a college student.
  1. Volvi Lowinger, 23, of Lakewood, N.J. (Girl, 15) Lowinger is a college student. Additional charges: Attempted Sexual Assault on a Minor (2nd degree), Attempted Debauching Morals of a Child (3rd degree), Attempted Showing Obscene Material to a Minor (3rd degree).
  1. Thomas Graciano, 28, of Brick, N.J. (Boy, 15) Graciano is a physical therapist in a retirement community.
  1. Thomas Blumensteel, 47, of Manchester, N.J. (Boy, 15) Blumensteel is a hotel manager and a registered sex offender. He was sentenced to three years in New Jersey State Prison in 1997 for aggravated criminal sexual contact for sexually assaulting a boy, 13, whom he was supervising as a church counselor. Additional charge: Attempted Sexual Assault on a Minor (2nd degree).
  1. Richard Conte, 47, of Farmingdale, N.J. (Girl, 15) Conte is a police sergeant with the Howell Township Police Department.
  1. Thomas Fuller, 44, Toms River, N.J. (Boy, 15) Fuller is an assistant manager/sterilization technician. Additional charge: Attempted Sexual Assault on a Minor (2nd degree).
  1.  Zachary Vincent, 24, of Forked River, N.J. (Girl, 15) Vincent is a landscaper. Additional charge: Attempted Sexual Assault on a Minor (2nd degree).
  1. William Singleton, 24, of Pemberton Township, N.J. (Girl, 14) Singleton is a restaurant worker. Additional charge: Attempted Sexual Assault on a Minor (2nd degree).
  1. Jonathan Vece, 22, of Turnersville, N.J. (Girl, 14) Vece is a canvasser. Additional charge: Attempted Sexual Assault on a Minor (2nd degree).
  1. Lawrence Ivancic, 51, of Toms River, N.J. (Girl, 14) Ivancic is unemployed. Additional charge: Attempted Sexual Assault on a Minor (2nd degree).
  1. Robert Lisicki, 51, of Metuchen, N.J. (Boy, 15) Lisicki is a train conductor. Additional charge: Attempted Sexual Assault on a Minor (2nd degree).
  1. Dylan Daffron, 28, of Lacey Township, N.J. (Boy, 15) Daffron is a cashier at a retail store. Additional charges: Attempted Sexual Assault on a Minor (2nd degree), Attempted Debauching Morals of a Child (3rd degree), Attempted Showing Obscene Material to a Minor (3rd degree).
  1. Steven Portnoy, 27, of Egg Harbor Township, N.J. (Girl, 15) Pornoy is unemployed. Additional charge: Attempted Sexual Assault on a Minor (2nd degree).
  1. David Studnicky, 64, of Toms River, N.J. (Boy, 15) Studnicky is employed as a dry cleaner. Additional charges: Attempted Sexual Assault on a Minor (2nd degree), Attempted Debauching Morals of a Child (3rd degree), Attempted Showing Obscene Material to a Minor (3rd degree).
  1. Anthony Perfidio, 24, of Barnegat, N.J. (Boy, 15) Perfidio is a data entry clerk.
  1. Brian Degnan, 33, of Toms River, N.J. (Boy, 15) Degnan is a data entry clerk.
  1. Nabindranauth Nandalall, 24, of Bronx, N.Y. (Girl, 15) Nandalall is unemployed.
  1. William D. Davis, 23, Bayville, N.J. (Girl, 15) Davis is a consultant.
  1. Charles Schlottfeld, 26, of Bayville, N.J. (Girl, 14) Schlottfeld is a mechanic. Additional charge: Attempted Sexual Assault on a Minor (2nd degree).
  1. Douglass Walton, 54, of Hillsborough, N.J. (Boy, 14) Walton is employed in produce. Additional charge: Attempted Sexual Assault on a Minor (2nd degree).

 

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