TOMS RIVER, NJ – The Toms River Police department on Monday said an off-duty Seaside Heights officer subdued a knife-wielding man on Route 37 near Brookside Drive.
According to police, on Monday, at around 7:35 pm, Toms River Police Department Sergeant Chris McDowell pulled over when he observed an agitated man with what appeared to be a large knife yelling at passing motorists near the intersection of Brookside Drive and Route 37.
“A passing off-duty Seaside Heights Police officer, Robert Wasilick, stopped to assist when he observed the male with the knife. Additional Toms River patrol officers responded and created a perimeter around the small, wooded area the male had retreated into,” the department said in a statement.
Police said the man was getting ‘increasingly agitated and combative and refused the officers’ commands to drop the large machete he was swinging at them.
“After roughly twenty minutes of attempted dialog to no avail, Officer Brian Appleby seized the opportunity to tackle the individual and secure the machete,” the TRPD said in a statement. “Officers subdued the man and transported him to Community Medical Center for an evaluation. He was charged with unlawful possession of a weapon and disorderly conduct.”
“I would like to commend all of the officers for an incredible amount of restraint which could have certainly become a deadly force situation,” said Chief Mitch Little.