New Jersey Officials Temporarily Shut Boardwalk Cite ‘Civil Unrest’

police officer on police bike, motorcycle

The head of New Jersey’s police union called for harsher penalties for the people responsible for the chaos in several cities along the Jersey Shore over Memorial Day weekend.

Peter Andreyev, the president of the New Jersey State Policemen’s Benevolent Association, said in a May 29 thread on X that more needed to be done to ensure that the police could protect communities.

Andreyev said the Memorial Day weekend unrest was proof that there needed to be “real consequences” for the drunken, violent, and dangerous behavior of juveniles and young adults.

The Jersey Shore was marred by violence and “civil unrest” over the holiday weekend, including the stabbing of a 15-year-old boy in Ocean City after a fight erupted on the boardwalk on Saturday, May 25.

Ocean City Mayor Jay Gillian said in a statement that the city would not tolerate disorderly conduct or bad behavior this summer season. Gillian issued a stern warning to teenagers and parents, saying if they could not behave, they should not come to Ocean City.

In a May 30 press conference, Ocean City and Cape May County officials reiterated Mayor Gillian’s message.

County Commissioner Len Desiderio said while 95 percent of the teens who come to the Jersey Shore are “great,” those who plan to come to Cape May County to “disrupt things” would be asked to “go somewhere else.”

Mayor Gillian said the city’s backpack ban on the boardwalk and beach, as well as the 11:00 p.m. curfew, would remain in place.

Nearby Wildwood, New Jersey in Cape May County was also the site of holiday chaos over Memorial Day weekend.

In the early hours of Monday, May 27, city officials issued a state of emergency and temporarily restricted access to the Wildwood boardwalk for several hours, citing “numerous incidents of civil unrest.”

According to Wildwood officials, the police were inundated with calls related to “young adults and juveniles” throughout the holiday weekend.

The state of emergency was lifted by 6:00 a.m. on Memorial Day.