Coronavirus: NJ parents charged with child endangerment after hosting party

A New Jersey couple was charged with five counts of child endangerment after hosting a party in front of their home, a violation of the state’s ban on gatherings due to the coronavirus pandemic, authorities said.

Eliezer Silber, 37, and his wife, Miriam Silber, 34, both of Lakewood, were charged with child endangerment because their five children were present at the party, NJ.com reported. Eliezer Silber was also charged with violating Gov. Phil Murphy’s order. signed March 21, banning large social gatherings, the website reported.

According to the Lakewood police, dozens of people were congregating in the street, in addition to gathering on the Silbers’ lawn, WXTF reported. Police said the group blocked the street where the Silbers’ home was located, the television station reported.

The Silbers were each given a summons and must appear in Ocean County Superior Court in Toms River, NJ.com reported.

"My office will prosecute any individual who defies or breaks the law, state of emergency or otherwise. Everyone must respect and follow the law,” Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley Billhimer said in a statement.

Lakewood police have stopped at least three weddings since the governor’s edict, NJ.com reported. As of Sunday, there were 371 COVID-19 cases in Lakewood, the website reported.