Piscataway Man Charged With Additional Sex Assaults

Joseph T. Burns (Photo courtesy of the Middlesex County Prosecutor's Office)

PISCATAWAY — Middlesex County Prosecutor Bruce J. Kaplan and Chief Richard Ivone of the Piscataway Police Department announced today that a township man has been charged with sexually assaulting two more children during repeated, but separate incidents in Piscataway.

Joseph T. Burns, 71, was charged with aggravated sexual assault and sexual assault of a girl while she was between the ages of 5 and 7 during incidents occurring between 1995 and 1998.

Burns also was charged with sexually assaulting a boy between 2003 and 2005, while the child was between the ages of 13 and 16.

In addition, Burns was charged with one count each of endangering the welfare of each of the youngsters for showing them pornographic materials.

Burns, who previously was charged with assaulting four other children on various dates between 1994 and 2007, was charged with the most recent counts on April 3 at the Middlesex County Adult Correction Center in North Brunswick, where he is being held on the prior charges in lieu of $600,000 bail.

The most recent charges were filed during a continuing investigation by Karleen Duca, an investigator with the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office, and Detective Ken Schultz of the Piscataway Police Department.

Investigators allege that Burns repeatedly sexually assaulted the children on separate occasions in the garage at his home and at a pool owned by his neighbors.

Burns initially was arrested on Nov. 10, 2011, on charges of sexually assaulting two girls, in separate and unrelated incidents.

A grand jury in Middlesex County indicted Burns on Jan.18 and charged him with two counts of sexual assault and two counts of child endangerment.

The indictment was handed up after the victims, now adults, reported the assaults to police. One victim, who is now 21 years old, told authorities she was sexually assaulted on numerous occasions when she was between the ages of 5 and 10. The second victim, who is now 16, was sexually assaulted on two occasions when she was 5 or 6 years old.

Burns subsequently was arrested and charged on March 27, 2012, with sexually assaulting a girl from 1994 to July 2005, while she was between the ages of 7 and 16.

He also was charged with child endangerment for allegedly giving alcohol to the girl and showing her pornographic images when she was 7 years old, and continuing the illicit activities until she was 16 years old, authorities said.

In addition, Burns was arrested and charged on March 21 with sexually assaulting a boy on numerous occasions between October 1999 and October 2007, while the youngster was between the ages of 6 and 14. A related child endangerment count also was filed.

Prosecutors are asking anyone with information on these, or similar, incidents to call Investigator Duca of the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office at 1-732-745-3600, or Detective Schultz of the Piscataway Police Department at 1-732-562-2350.

As is the case with all criminal defendants, the charges against Burns are merely accusations and he is presumed innocent until proven guilty.

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