Connect with us

Police, Fire & Courts

Seaside Heights Secures Injunction Against Organizer of Canceled ‘Pop-Up’ Parties

The Ocean County Justice Complex, Toms River, N.J. (Photo: Daniel Nee)

The Ocean County Justice Complex, Toms River, N.J. (Photo: Daniel Nee)

A North Jersey man was ordered to cease advertising non-permitted, large-scale events in Seaside Heights after the borough sought legal action following a number of social media posts advertising “wild” gatherings and “link-ups” in town and elsewhere.

Superior Court Judge Craig R. Wellerson permanently ordered Juan Victor Chaname-Millett to cease advertising parties in the borough unless they were to be held legally with a permit. A “link-up” was advertised for this weekend in Seaside Heights, with another planned later in the summer.

In the past, such “gatherings” in Shore towns have become what some officials have compared to riots and mob scenes, including one that drew 5,000 people to Long Branch last summer, resulting in fights, large-scale vandalism and more than a dozen arrests. Point Pleasant Beach also experienced such a scene in 2020 that left the town awash in litter the following day, eliciting a strong response from the borough’s mayor, who is now running for a seat in the state’s General Assembly.

Get Daily Island News Updates
Your email address:*
Please enter all required fields Click to hide
Correct invalid entries Click to hide

Chaname-Millett did not appear in court to defend his case Wednesday. Attempts to contact him went unanswered. One of the social media pages to which he was linked, RatedRParties, according to officials, posted a cancellation notice of the would-be gathering.

“The town has officers ready to arrest anyone that comes/forms in big crowds,” the post said. “This is a warning from the town I want this for your safety as well as for myself I just ask that nobody pull up. Thanks for ya understanding the situation. 100.”

The page promotes parties in various locations around the state, and often charges for admission to the advertised events. Many are promoted with links to buy tickets online to parties at “secret” locations, with just a city named as the venue. Another Instagram page allegedly run by Chaname-Millett, “jerseysviralparties,” acknowledged another such gathering was canceled in Cape May County, with video of a News12 New Jersey segment posted alongside the announcement.

“He’s already sent out a flyer telling people not to come, they may be arrested,” said Seaside Heights Mayor Anthony Vaz. “But he did not come to court, and the injunction still stands.”

Vaz said the borough will continue to utilize the court system to prevent unpermitted “pop-up” parties in the future, which can overwhelm police and first responders.

“We will use the courts, but we are really looking for enforcement,” said Vaz. “We’re asking the state legislators in New Jersey to come up with some type of law that comes up with a penalty for things like this, inciting poor behavior – coming to a Shore community, or any community for that matter, to cause trouble and just form a large crowd.”

Vaz said Police Chief Thomas Boyd as well as investigators with the Ocean County Sheriff’s Department have utilized software to scour social media sites and apps in order to learn about potential large-scale events in advance, so action can be taken before they get out of hand. The practice has become routine for local law enforcement.

“That’s how we found out about this,” said Vaz. “We sat down and created a policy with the detectives where they would begin taking a look at this.”

Click to comment