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This Hour: Latest New Jersey news, sports, business and entertainment

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CASINO CLOSINGS

Revel shutdown OKd as prayer service nears

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) - Hours before hundreds of workers were to hold a prayer rally as three casinos are set to close, New Jersey officials issued a final closure order for another one.

The state Gaming Enforcement Division gave final approval to Revel's shutdown on Sept. 1 and 2, signing the order on Tuesday night and releasing it on Wednesday.

Employees of Revel, the Showboat and Trump Plaza will attend a prayer service at a church near the casinos on Wednesday.

Showboat and Revel are due to close over Labor Day weekend, with Trump Plaza shutting down on Sept. 16.

The shutdowns are part of a rapid unraveling of Atlantic City's gambling market, which began the year with 12 casinos, but will have eight before summer ends.

The Atlantic Club closed in January.

SANDY-PRICE GOUGING

NJ hotel settles Sandy price gouging case

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) - A hotel in southern New Jersey has agreed to pay nearly $65,000 to settle allegations of price gouging in the wake of Superstorm Sandy.

Amy Hotels did business as Econo Lodge in Egg Harbor Township.

State officials claimed the company raised its room rates by as much as 150 percent to $199.99 per night after Governor Chris Christie declared a state of emergency in advance of Sandy making landfall. The rooms cost $79.99 per night before the declaration.

New Jersey's price gouging law prohibits excessive price increases during a declared state of emergency for merchandise used as a direct result of an emergency or used to protect the life, health, safety or comfort of persons or their property.

Nearly $25,000 from the settlement will be for consumer restitution.

SCHOOLYARD KILLINGS

Man seeks new trial in NJ schoolyard slayings

(Information in the following story is from: The (Newark, N.J.) Star-Ledger, http://www.nj.com )

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) - One of six men found guilty in the 2007 execution-style slayings of three friends in a Newark schoolyard is seeking to overturn his conviction and wants a new trial.

Jose Carranza faces a hearing in Newark on Wednesday.

Carranza was sentenced to 155 years in prison following his conviction of felony murder and armed robbery.

The 35-year-old claims his attorney coerced him not to testify and failed to conduct any pre-trial investigations.

But his attorney, John Dell'Italia, tells The Star-Ledger of Newark he advised his client against testifying because Carranza had provided written statements to an inmate that included drawings depicting the shootings.

The three victims and a fourth who survived were enrolled or about to enroll at Delaware State University.

FATAL CRASH

NJ crash kills 3, critically injures 1

FREEHOLD TOWNSHIP, N.J. (AP) - Investigators have not yet released the names of the victims of a motor vehicle crash that killed three and critically injured one person in New Jersey.

One official described Tuesday's accident in Freehold Township as "horrific."

First assistant Monmouth County prosecutor Marc LeMieux says a Volkswagen Jetta traveling south on Kozloski Road crossed into the northbound lane, hitting a Honda Pilot head-on. The Honda became airborne and landed on top of a Toyota Camry.

LeMieux says the 50-year-old man driving the Honda, the 19-year-old male driver and the 20-year-old female passenger in the Volkswagen were killed. LeMieux says the 25-year-old driver of the Toyota is in critical condition with a head injury.

Investigators are trying to determine why the Volkswagen crossed the center line.

CHRISTIE-OKLAHOMA VISIT

NJ Governor Christie to visit OKC with Governor Fallin

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) - New Jersey Governor and Republican Governors Association Chairman Chris Christie is scheduled to visit Oklahoma City to attend events with Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin.

Christie is to attend three events with Fallin on Wednesday.

Christie is to join Fallin for a visit to the Oklahoma National Memorial and Museum, then attend a Republican National Governors Association event with Fallin and take part in a Fallin for Governor event.

Fallin is running for re-election to a second term in office. She faces Democratic state Rep. Joe Dorman in the Nov. 4 general election.

SUPERSTORM-BELMAR PAVILIONS

Belmar voters reject plan to rebuild pavilions

(Information in the following story is from: Asbury Park (N.J.) Press, http://www.app.com )

BELMAR, N.J. (AP) - Belmar voters have rejected a plan to borrow $7 million to rebuild two beach pavilions that were destroyed by Superstorm Sandy.

Tuesday's vote in a special election was 1,041 to 756.

Opponents had argued the project could be done for less by using Federal Emergency Management Administration and insurance money.

Supporters said the pavilions needed to be built stronger to withstand future storms.

Mayor Matthew Doherty, who supported the bond referendum, told the Asbury Park Press his job is to bring the community together and to solicit new ideas about what types of pavilions residents want to see built.

IMMIGRANT DETENTION

Union County to change immigration jail policy

ELIZABETH, N.J. (AP) - Union County will become the third county in New Jersey to limit cooperation with federal immigration officials over detaining those who may be in the U.S. illegally.

County officials on Wednesday will announce the county jail would stop honoring requests by immigration officials to keep those detainees locked up 48 hours longer than their scheduled release.

Immigration officials would need a court order or warrant.

Middlesex and ocean counties have also changed their policies.

FATAL SHOOTING

Arrest made in deadly Newark shooting

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) - Authorities have arrested a suspect on charges stemming from the deadly shooting of a man who was found by firefighters inside a smoky Newark apartment.

Authorities say 50-year-old Roderick Whipple is held on $1 million bail, charged with murder and weapons offenses.

Authorities say Whipple knew 41-year-old David Johnson.

Newark firefighters found Johnson unresponsive on the floor of a smoky apartment on Tuesday. He was pronounced dead at a hospital where he was taken after firefighters discovered that he was suffering from a gunshot wound.

FIRE OFFICIAL-CHILDREN INJURED

NJ fire director pleads guilty to careless driving

(Information in the following story is from: Home News Tribune (East Brunswick, N.J.) , http://www.mycentraljersey.com )

SOUTH BRUNSWICK, N.J. (AP) - The director of New Brunswick's fire department has pleaded guilty to careless driving after he struck three children who were walking in a crosswalk.

A judge in South Brunswick on Tuesday fined Robert Rawls $206.

Rawls did not speak during the court appearance.

Authorities said Rawls was on duty and driving a city-owned vehicle on May 6 when he struck two 14-year-old girls and a 6-year-old boy. The children sustained broken bones.

The prosecutor's office said Rawls was not speeding and there was no evidence of alcohol or drug use.

His attorney, Thomas Buck, tells the Home News Tribune Rawls accepts responsibility and apologizes. Buck blamed parked cars for obstructing Rawls' vision.

The family of one of the children plans to file a lawsuit.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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  • Reward in probe of shooting of bald eagle in NJ

    Reward in probe of shooting of bald eagle in NJ

    Wednesday, August 20 2014 2:42 PM EDT2014-08-20 18:42:12 GMT
    Federal, state, and humane organizations are offering $7,500 in rewards in the case of the shooting of bald eagle in New Jersey. Someone shot a bald eagle in in Bridgeton City Park back in May, authorities said. The badly wounded bird was found May 20, 2014. Its wounds were so severe that it had to be euthanized.
    Federal, state, and humane organizations are offering $7,500 in rewards in the case of the shooting of bald eagle in New Jersey. Someone shot a bald eagle in in Bridgeton City Park back in May, authorities said. The badly wounded bird was found May 20, 2014. Its wounds were so severe that it had to be euthanized.
  • Utility worker pulled from truck and beaten

    Utility worker pulled from truck and beaten

    Wednesday, August 20 2014 2:41 PM EDT2014-08-20 18:41:18 GMT
    Hartford police are searching for two men who pulled a utility company worker out of a dump truck and beat him up after a traffic accident.
    Hartford police are searching for two men who pulled a utility company worker out of a dump truck and beat him up after a traffic accident.
  • NJ requires students to get CPR lessons

    NJ requires students to get CPR lessons

    Wednesday, August 20 2014 1:52 PM EDT2014-08-20 17:52:46 GMT
    New Jersey high school students will be required to have CPR training starting this year. Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno signed a law Wednesday requiring the lesson for all public and charter school students in ninth through 12th grades. Guadagno is serving as acting governor with Gov. Chris Christie out of the state. It takes effect in the coming school year.
    New Jersey high school students will be required to have CPR training starting this year. Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno signed a law Wednesday requiring the lesson for all public and charter school students in ninth through 12th grades. Guadagno is serving as acting governor with Gov. Chris Christie out of the state. It takes effect in the coming school year.

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