Earlier this week we had a bit of a technical issue at the station.

For nearly 20 minutes before "First News" at 5:30 a.m., the station was down and listeners heard nothing but dead air.

That raised a few concerns and one listener called the Ewing police to ask them to check it out. The alert cops in the Ewing police department, led by Chief Albert Rhodes, responded right away.

Officers Corey Fornarotto and Matthew Folis arrived at the station to make sure everyone was OK. It's a simple wellness check but it's important to know that your local police force is on the job and they take inquiries like this seriously.

Thankfully it was a technical difficulty and everyone was OK.

I want to take this #BlueFriday to thank the responding officers and Chief Rhodes for their outstanding commitment to public safety and our community.

They are a great example of the professionalism we can expect from New Jersey police officers.

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Bill Spadea. Any opinions expressed are Bill's own. Bill Spadea is on the air weekdays from 6 to 10 a.m., talkin’ Jersey, taking your calls at 1-800-283-1015.

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NJ teachers and educators caught in sex crime busts

Over the past few years, state lawmakers have taken on the challenge of dealing with accused child predators among the ranks of teachers and educators.

In 2018, the so-called “pass the trash” law went into effect, requiring stricter New Jersey school background checks related to child abuse and sexual misconduct.

The follow individuals were arrested over the past several years. Some have been convicted and sentenced to prison, while others have accepted plea deals for probation.

Others cases are still pending, including some court delays amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

NJ arrests 31 accused child predators in "Operation 24/7"

A roundup of 31 men have been accused of sexually exploiting children online, state Attorney General Gurbir Grewal announced on July 14 while detailing "Operation 24/7."

The suspects “possessed and or distributed videos and images of child sexual abuse, including in many cases videos of young children being raped by adults,” Grewal said.

Chat apps and gaming platforms remain favorite hunting grounds for child predators and even as the pandemic winds down, many children have continued to spend more time online.

State Police received 39% more tips in just the first 6 months of 2021 than they received in the entire year in 2019. The following are suspects charged in "Operation 24/7."