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New Milford Man Accused of Causing Bergen County Courthouse Flood

Judge and officer injured in falls; courthouse closed for remainder of the day, official says.

HACKENSACK - A 27-year-old New Milford man was arrested Monday after he broke a water pipe at the Bergen County Courthouse, causing significant damage and forcing the building to close for the remainder of the day, the sheriff’s office said. 

Benjamin Blohm was caught on camera kicking the third floor pipe until it broke, according to Bergen County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Richard Moriarty. Sheriff's officers reviewed security footage and arrested Blohm at the courthouse. 

Blohm was in the building for a drug court appearance, Moriarty said.

A Superior Court judge and a sheriff’s officer slipped on the wet ground and were both treated for injuries, Moriarty said. The judge was taken to an area hospital, but his condition was not immediately available. 

The Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office, on the second floor, sustained heavy damage and forced some staff to relocate. An elevator shaft was also apparently flooded. 

Officials were forced to shut down water in the building, Moriarty said. There was a concern that water would hit electrical outlets, causing a hazard. 

Blohm faces charges of criminal mischief and causing a disturbance which caused widespread injury. 

Blohm was in court Monday awaiting an appearance before Superior Court Judge Eugene H. Austin on drug charges stemming from a New Year's Eve arrest in New Milford. 

According to New Milford Police Chief Frank Papapietro, Blohm has a long history of arrests.

"He is well known to our department," Papapietro said, adding that Blohm is also facing additional charges stemming from an arrest by New Milford police in May for possession of drug paraphernalia. 

He was being held on $50,000 bail. 

J.D. Luke July 10, 2012 at 06:11 PM
I'm assuming that "did" was a simple typographical error, and that Walter meant "didn't". I tend to agree with that sentiment, that bringing law enforcement into what is essentially a health problem just compounds the issues.
AML July 10, 2012 at 06:20 PM
So, Tony please open up your wallet & pay for the damages, if this is such a "petty" thing as you say! Cough up the money! Better yet, open up your house & take him in to rehabilitate him. If he happened to kill a family member of yours, or, your child, would you be this forgiving? He is obviously addicted to drugs! He has been arrested numerous times & I blame the laws for allowing him to be released. He was not born with a needle in his arms, he elected to put the needle into his arms. Sympathy can only go so far, when there are truly deserving people who are suffering every day through no fault of their own!
AML July 10, 2012 at 06:32 PM
To Me..... To have thought that it was "funny" to see a judge & sheriff's officer slip on wet ground is the most idiotic comment to say the least! To compare it to an episode of the Stooges is even more absurd. To compare adults slipping with the potential of severely hurting themselves to children that walk in 2 inches of water, well, let's just say this.......what's funny is that you must have the lowest of the low IQ. Time that you make an appointment to see a neurologist to check whatever thought processes you may have! Perhaps, one day you will slip & fall into a shard of glass & then you can laugh at yourself & think "gee whiz, a child would have not done what I just did! Grow up & get a life!
Tax payer July 15, 2012 at 03:31 AM
Yeah, put him away for life. Better yet, give him the electric chair for causing the judge and the deputy slip and fall, pitty. I'm sure this time they will hold him for a while since the poor souls slipped and fell. Otherwise, the judge will let him go again to go and hurt the innocent.
Tony Almeada July 17, 2012 at 02:31 PM
and you want to be my latex salesman

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