Secaucus Police Department detectives have arrested the marketing director of Hudson Regional Hospital. His arrest on August 7 follows an investigation that led to the seizure of multiple firearms and ammunition, according to Police Chief Dennis Miller.
Reuven Alonalayoff, a 46-year-old of Elmwood Park, is charged with Possession of an Assault Firearm, and two counts of Possession of a High Capacity Magazine. Miller said he was arrested at Newark Liberty International Airport with assistance from the United States Department of Homeland Security Investigations.
Investigation launched after bomb threat
On July 18, at 3:10 P.M., Hudson Regional Hospital, located at 55 Meadowlands Parkway, received a phone call that a bomb was in the hospital. According to Miller, Secaucus police responded to the hospital along with bomb detection canines from the Hudson County Sheriff’s Office and Bayonne Police Department.
During a safety sweep of the hospital, the bomb detection canine gave a positive indication on an unlocked closet within an office, Miller said. Upon entering the closet, police discovered a large cache of rifles, shotguns and handguns, along with assorted ammunition for the firearms.
A total of 11 handguns of various calibers, and 27 rifles and shotguns were discovered. A Kriss Vector .45 caliber semi-automatic rifle with a high-capacity magazine was also recovered and determined to be an assault rifle.
Additionally, a 14-round high-capacity handgun magazine was also seized. The bomb threat was later determined to be a hoax.
“The unsecured storage of a large cache of weaponry, especially in this location, certainly creates a risk to public safety,” said Miller. “I commend the efforts and professionalism of all the police personnel involved in this investigation and am thankful this situation was resolved without anyone being harmed.”
These charges are merely accusations and the defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty.
Hudson Regional Hospital addresses situation
On August 9, Hudson Regional Hospital released a statement elaborating on the incident.
“During a search of Hudson Regional Hospital related to a bomb scare hoax, firearms were discovered in a locked office on an administrative floor of the hospital that was occupied by a non-employee consultant,” a spokesperson for Hudson Regional Hospital said. “The items were immediately removed from the site and were impounded by Secaucus Police, who found no other presence of firearms in the building. Law enforcement subsequently has not approached Hudson Regional Hospital at any level regarding any legal issues related to the impounded items. If requested, we will provide further support to law enforcement regarding the continuing investigation into this matter.”
The hospital is now reviewing safety measures to avoid such issues in the future.
“The presence of weapons in a hospital is inexcusable beyond comprehension and contradicts our mission of care and our commitment to the safety of our community of staff, patients and the extended community,” the spokesperson added. “While regrettable, this incident has given us occasion to review security protocols and we have taken steps to assure that it will never happen again.”
For updates on this and other stories, check www.hudsonreporter.com and follow us on Twitter @hudson_reporter. Daniel Israel can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.