ATLANTIC COUNTY-Jay McKeen, a spokesperson for the Atlantic City Prosecutor’s Office said his office is now reviewing a case against local Ocean County philanthropist and WOBM radio host Jeremy Grunin.
The Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office confirmed the incident that occurred involving Grunin in Island Heights last July has been transferred to Atlantic County over a conflict of interest issue. Grunin’s foundation had previously awarded a $10,000 donation to Tina’s House, a charity promoted by the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office.
In July of 2016, Grunin was involved in a car crash and subsequent police chase in Island Heights, as reported by the Island Heights Police Department.
A source close to the case said Atlantic County may have a hard time trying the case against Grunin since the incident was not reported to the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office for nearly a month after it happened and a proper accident scene investigation was never conducted.
McKeen said at this time no trial date has been scheduled.
The incident was also never reported in the media.
According to the Island Heights Police Department, this is what happened that night:
On Sunday July 17, 2016 @ 12:23am, while on patrol, Patrolman Robert Sinnott observed what appeared to be a lot of smoke in the roadway on Central Ave. Upon arrival at the scene, there were two vehicles into a pole both with extensive damage.
The 2nd vehicle was occupied by a male who had blood running down his face. At this time, Ptl. Sinnott notified the county dispatch to dispatch fire & first aid.
Ptl. Sinnott quickly exited his vehicle to check on the driver of the vehicle, at which time, the driver backed his car up and began to drive away. Ptl. Sinnott was yelling to the driver to “stop” but he continued on his way. Ptl. Sinnott when returning to his vehicle, saw the vehicle lose control and crash into a parked car pushing it along the curb.
Ptl. Sinnott went over to the vehicle and spoke with the driver who did not realize he was just in two accidents and he stated to Ptl. Sinnott that everything was ok and he was going home. Ptl. Sinnott advised him to stay in his car while he checked the other vehicles. As Ptl. Sinnott walked away, he started up his vehicle and began to drive away. Ptl. Sinnott signaled him to stop and he did not acknowledge his order.
Ptl. Sinnott concerned for the driver’s safety and others, reached his hand in attempt to turn off the vehicle but he began to drive away while Ptl. Sinnott was ordering him to stop his vehicle. Ptl. Sinnott at this point stepped away from the vehicle and returned to his marked unit to follow and stop the vehicle in question. Ptl. Sinnott activated his lights & siren and the vehicle stopped. Ptl. Sinnott advised the driver to turn off his car and give him his keys and he did. As Ptl. Sinnott again attempted to check on the other vehicles, the car started up due to it having a key fob.
Ptl. Sinnott quickly opened the door and had the driver who was having trouble maintaining his balance get out of the vehicle. Ptl. Sinnott assisted him with sitting down on the side of the road. The Island Heights Fire Chief arrived along with Toms River CSO MED unit, MONOC paramedics and Toms River Police Department.
It was at this time, that the driver was identified as Jeremy Grunin, 42 years old of Toms River. Mr. Grunin refused medical attention several times but in the end did end up being transported to Community Medical Center for a head laceration. Due to his medical condition, Ptl. Sinnott was unable to conduct a field sobriety test. Mr. Grunin was charged with eluding police, failure to wear seatbelt, careless driving(2), leaving the scene of an accident(2), failure to report an accident(2), failure to maintain lane(2) and failure to observe police officers orders. A court date is pending. Lt. Kevin Arnold, Ptl. Paul Rutledge & Ptl. Michael Conrad assisted.