Essex County News

Nutley Police Make Arrest In Instagram School Threat Case


NUTLEY, NJ - The Nutley Police Department made an arrest in the case of an Instagram video post which led to the closing of Nutley schools on Friday, as the video was considering threatening. An 18-year-old resident was charged with Third Degree False Public Alarm.

Jospeh Rafanello, a senior at Nutley High School, was arrested and taken to Essex County Jail.   The arrest followed a full investigation by the police.  

Chief Thomas Strumolo stated that the investigation did not uncover any further active security threats to the Nutley Public Schools. The department will continue to work with the Nutley Public School district to guarantee the safety of the schools, students, and staff. 

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When students return to school on Monday, residents may notice the increase in patrols around the schools. Strumolo put these in place as a proactive measure and stated that these are not related to any further threats. 

Strumolo and Nutley Public Safety Commissioner Alphonse Petracco stressed their gratitude to the parents in the district as well as the community at large for their patience as this matter was investigated. Gratitude was also expressed to the Nutley Detective Bureau and the Essex County Prosecutors Office for their assistance.

Petracco and Strumolo stated anyone thinking about making threats to the schools will be identified and prosecuted utilizing all available resources. All threats will be taken seriously and will be fully investigated.

The Nutley Police Department reminds everyone that all defendants are presumed innocent unless and until they enter a guilty plea or are found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.


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