A Keansburg man who called in a false bomb threat to the borough's police department last Thursday may spend 10-years behind bars if convicted along with paying a civil fine that could add up to tens of thousands of dollars, according to the Monmouth County Prosecutors Office.

Joseph Matich, 29, is accused of alleging a residence near center street had pipe bombs and a pressure cooker inside.

The New Jersey State Police Bomb Squad, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Federal Bureau of Investigations, K-9 Unit and Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office responded.

The scene was investigated and cleared.

Nothing was found.

Matich was charged with second degree false public alarm.

He faces a civil penalty for the actual costs incurred by the law enforcement agencies responding to this incident.

A detention hearing for Matich is scheduled for Thursday, May 31 in Superior Court before Judge Paul X. Escandon.

"These phony threats take an emotional toll on the law enforcement officials, first responders and the community," Monmouth County Prosecutor Chris Gramiccioni said. "There is absolutely no place in today's society for these types of incidents whatsoever. These false bomb threats are not a game or joke and the people making these phony threats will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law."

A 2016 amendment to the bill, spearheaded by Gramiccioni with the assistance of former State Senator Jennifer Beck and other state legislators, increased the crime of False Public Alarm to a second degree offense if the alarm concerned the false report of an impending bombing.

Despite these charges, every defendant is presumed innocent, unless and until found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, following a trial at which the defendant has all of the trial rights guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution and State law.

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