TRENTON – Acting Attorney General John J. Hoffman today announced that, as of yesterday afternoon, close to 3,000 individuals have taken advantage of the Fugitive Safe Surrender program in Jersey City. The program, which ends today, affords people wanted on non-violent warrants in New Jersey an opportunity to surrender safely at a Jersey City church, take responsibility for their offenses, and seek favorable consideration from the court.
“Nearly 3,000 people decided to stop looking over their shoulders and change their lives this week through the Fugitive Safe Surrender program,” Hoffman said. “They joined with the 13,000 individuals who surrendered in New Jersey’s four previous events in realizing that this is, in fact, the best deal around. For anyone who is undecided about this program, we remind you that Saturday is the last day of Fugitive Safe Surrender and we strongly encourage you to take advantage of this incredible opportunity to stop running from the law and turn your life around.”
One such person was Eddie Restrepo. Restrepo, 33, of West New York, lived in fear for years under the weight of multiple unpaid traffic tickets. But after Retrepo turned himself into the Fugitive Safe Surrender Program in Jersey City Wednesday morning, he walked away a free man with a clean record.
Restrepo expected to pay thousands in fines but instead paid only a few hundred to resolve his warrants. After completing the Fugitive Safe Surrender program, Restrepo immediately decided to help out and has been volunteering at the program since Wednesday.
“This really saved my life,” Restrepo said. “It was a load off my back. I felt free.”
The Fugitive Safe Surrender program is only open to American citizens or legal residents of the United States. Its focus is on those wanted for non-violent criminal matters, or for municipal matters such as unpaid fines or child support. Individuals who are wanted for violent crimes, or who have a violent criminal history, are much more likely to be taken into custody.
Today is the last day of Fugitive Safe Surrender–Northern New Jersey. Anyone wanted for non-violent offenses are invited to turn themselves in from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Evangelismos Greek Orthodox Church, 661 Montgomery St., Jersey City.
For information about Fugitive Safe Surrender can be found at http://www.fssnj.com or http://www.facebook.com/fssnj.