READINGTON, NJ – Readington police arrested a local couple at their home last week after finding a “runaway juvenile” hiding inside a van parked at the back of their property, police said.
The juvenile was reported missing in Virginia in October, 2018. Police here received a tip that the juvenile may have been hiding at a home on Flemington-Whitehouse Road.
After they found the juvenile, police said they determined that the homeowners – Darren and Tracy Pieper – “were providing false information and obstructing the officers’ attempts” to locate the missing person.
During the course of the investigation, police said they found evidence that the missing juvenile was potentially staying there in a makeshift apartment in the home.
Darren Pieper was arrested and charged with third-degree custodial interference; third-degree endangering the welfare of a child; fourth-degree obstructing the administration of law; fourth-degree hindering (his own) apprehension; and providing alcohol to minors, a disorderly persons offense.
Tracy Pieper was arrested and charged with fourth-degree obstruction the administration of law; and hindering (her own) apprehension, a disorderly persons offense.
Darren Pieper was lodged in Somerset County Jail to await his first appearance. Tracy Pieper was released on a summons complaint.
Care of the juvenile was turned over to the state Division of Child Protection and Permanency until they could be reunited with family.
The Hunterdon County Prosecutor's Office, Henrico County (Va.) Police Department and the FBI assisted on this case. Police didn't identify the age or sex of the juvenile.