🔴 3 women attacked separately in Ocean County

🔴 Police chase ended in crash

🔴 One man accused of being responsible for crime spree

LAKEWOOD — A 35-year-old Monmouth County man has been arrested for a series of disturbing attacks against women that ended with a police chase and crash in Toms River, according to authorities.

Quamel Benton, of Farmingdale, is accused of going on a crime spree Thursday that lasted into the early morning hours of the next day.

Benton is charged with attempted kidnapping, child endangerment, criminal sexual contact, resisting arrest, two counts of eluding, and obstruction, according to the Ocean County Prosecutor's Office.

He is being held at Burlington County Jail.

Vehicle involved in an attempted kidnapping in Lakewood 3/21/24
Vehicle involved in an attempted kidnapping in Lakewood 3/21/24 (Dunoff Photography via The Lakewood Scoop)

Crime spree in 2 counties

Authorities said that before going after women in Ocean County, he attacked another victim in Burlington County on Thursday.

He was charged with aggravated assault and weapon possession for an unlawful purpose for an incident in Willingboro, the OCPO said. Authorities did not reveal what time the incident happened or the gender of the victim.

Charges for attempted kidnapping, sex crimes

Lakewood police got a call for a possible kidnapping around 7:30 p.m. Thursday, prosecutors said. The shore town is about a one-hour drive away from Willingboro.

The caller said a man in a white SUV tried to kidnap a teenage girl in the area of Forest Park Circle. The girl was able to get away and run back home, authorities said.

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Then at around 9 p.m., police in Toms River were called to the parking lot of the Target on Hooper Avenue.

Investigators found that a man, later identified as Benton, had gone up to a female victim and grabbed her inappropriately. Toms River police found the suspect's vehicle nearby in the parking lot and began a police chase.

Authorities said the vehicle drove onto the Garden State Parkway at a high rate of speed and was "erratic," so police stopped the chase.

Toms River police chase ends in crash

Nearly four hours later, Toms River police got another call around 12:40 a.m. Friday for a man trying to break into a woman's car while she was in it.

Benton again tried to drive away when police arrived, prosecutors said. Authorities said that after another police chase, Benton crashed into a utility pole near Route 70 and Whitesville Road.

(Courtesy Dunoff Photography via The Lakewood Scoop)
(Courtesy Dunoff Photography via The Lakewood Scoop)

Benton was arrested after a brief foot chase, authorities said.

The Lakewood Scoop reported that police would increase police patrols over the weekend.

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