New Jersey Attorney General Matthew Platkin has filed criminal charges against the mayor of Clark after an investigation into alleged racial slurs made by Mayor Salvator Bonaccorso. The charges include witness tampering, falsifying records, and operating a landscaping and illegal tank removal business out of his township office while acting in his official capacity as mayor.
Bonaccorso, 63, allegedly used municipal resources to run his company and submitted permit applications with forged signatures and false information. When CBS New York reached out to Clark Township for comment, a spokesperson for Bonaccorso had no comment. Efforts to obtain a comment at his residence were unsuccessful.
Residents of Clark expressed their opinions on the situation. One resident stated that if a mayor or someone else is doing illegal things, they should resign. Another resident commented that Clark is a good place and that Bonaccorso made it better than the previous mayor. However, these comments were made before the charges were announced.
The criminal charges resulting from another investigation into the police department, its chief, and claims of racist comments made by the mayor led to a 43-page report alleging racially-motivated arrests as well as a failure to investigate allegations of misconduct. The report stated that Black individuals were arrested at a disproportionate rate. Records obtained by the attorney general’s office were insufficient to charge police officials, and the police department is now under county supervision.
Christine Sloan is an Emmy Award-winning reporter who covers New Jersey for CBS 2 New York. She re-joined the station in January 2023 after previously working at CBS 2 New York from 2004 to 2016.