Jersey City 'mystery' safes contain extension cord - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Jersey City 'mystery' safes contain extension cord

Posted: Updated:

By KATIE ZEZIMA

JERSEY CITY, N.J. (AP) — The two large safes sat in an old vault turned storage closet, unopened for years, a footnote in the colorful, occasionally corrupt history of Jersey City city hall.

No one paid any attention to them — or wondered what was in them — until the city's new mayor, Steven Fulop, decided to hire a locksmith to open them.

Theories abounded. Was it a stash of money? Old documents? Human remains? Something sinister that legendary Mayor Frank "Boss" Hague stashed away decades ago?

The mystery was solved Tuesday and it was a letdown. Inside was nothing but musty air and one power cord.

Fulop said he had imagined having an "Geraldo moment," referring to the 1986 TV special when Geraldo Rivera pumped up a viewing audience before opening a vault in Chicago's Lexington Hotel linked to Al Capone, only to reveal a few bottles and a sign.

Fulop imagined he would reveal — or not reveal — something for the cameras Tuesday. He even stuck his arm in each safe, making sure nothing was stashed deep inside or the safe didn't have a false back.

"If I put something in there, I wouldn't put an extension cord," Fulop said.

A locksmith estimated the safes were installed sometime between the late 1930s and early 1950s, and Fulop said he thought it would be fun to put the mystery to rest. He contacted Jersey City's surviving former mayors, but no one knew what was in the safe mainly because no one had bothered to ask.

"People would say they assumed there was money because of the nature of corruption here," Fulop said, noting that they were talking about the '40s and '50s and not his current administration.

A spokeswoman for Fulop said the city spent between $1,000 and $1,500 to hire a Long Island locksmith, one of the few people who knew how to open such old safes. The locksmith, Elaad Israeli, said it took him about 25 minutes to open one and an hour to unlock the other.

Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


  • New Jersey NewsNew Jersey NewsMore>>

  • Federal authorities to monitor Newark police

    Federal authorities to monitor Newark police

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 9:37 PM EDT2014-07-23 01:37:12 GMT
    Newark police engaged in the excessive use of force, routinely stopped people on the street for no legitimate reason and regularly stole property from civilians, the U.S. Department of Justice concluded in a report released Tuesday that set the stage for federal monitoring of the police department that serves New Jersey's largest city. The report is the culmination of a three-year investigation begun months after the American Civil Liberties Union filed a complaint.
    Newark police engaged in the excessive use of force, routinely stopped people on the street for no legitimate reason and regularly stole property from civilians, the U.S. Department of Justice concluded in a report released Tuesday that set the stage for federal monitoring of the police department that serves New Jersey's largest city. The report is the culmination of a three-year investigation begun months after the American Civil Liberties Union filed a complaint.
  • Anaconda sightings in Lake Hopatcong reported

    Anaconda sightings in Lake Hopatcong reported

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 5:59 PM EDT2014-07-22 21:59:16 GMT
    Boaters in Lake Hopatcong in New Jersey are keeping an eye out for an unwanted visitor lurking underwater: a 14- or 15-foot-ong snake, possibly a green anaconda. Several people have seen the reptile, which has probably holed up in a drain pipe. Reptile specialists are also searching the lake for signs of the snake. So far no more sightings have been reported.
    Boaters in Lake Hopatcong in New Jersey are keeping an eye out for an unwanted visitor lurking underwater: a 14- or 15-foot-ong snake, possibly a green anaconda. Several people have seen the reptile, which has probably holed up in a drain pipe. Reptile specialists are also searching the lake for signs of the snake. So far no more sightings have been reported.
  • Search for masked robbers in Caesars heist

    Search for masked robbers in Caesars heist

    Tuesday, July 22 2014 3:28 PM EDT2014-07-22 19:28:51 GMT
    The hunt is on in southern New Jersey for two suspects who made off with more than $180K from Caesars Atlantic City casino. The brazen robbers reportedly stole the cash from two plastic boxes on the casino floor. The robbery occurred on Monday at about 6 a.m. The masked robbers took off in a vehicle. The State Police Casino Gaming Bureau is handling the investigation.
    The hunt is on in southern New Jersey for two suspects who made off with more than $180K from Caesars Atlantic City casino. The brazen robbers reportedly stole the cash from two plastic boxes on the casino floor. The robbery occurred on Monday at about 6 a.m. The masked robbers took off in a vehicle. The State Police Casino Gaming Bureau is handling the investigation.
Powered by WorldNow

WHBQ-TV | Fox 13
485 S. Highland St.
Memphis, TN 38111

Main Station: (901) 320-1313
Newsroom: (901) 320-1340

Didn't find what you were looking for?
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Fox Television Stations, Inc. and Worldnow. All Rights Reserved.
Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Ad Choices