Embattled Passaic NAACP President Jeffrey Dye had just been chosen to head the Local Residents Work Force when he was arrested in 1998 for threatening his brother with a knife.
Issues related what the Murphy administration called Dye’s “past offenses” were first reported by The (Bergen) Record.
Dye was fired from his job at the New Jersey Department of Labor and Workforce Development last week after anti-Semitic and anti-Latino comments he made became public.
Details of those offenses come from The Record and Herald news archives.
Dye was charged with aggravated assault and weapons charges, but he disputed the allegations against him. He claimed it was just an argument between siblings. His brother was also arrested – for hitting Dye with a hammer.
The Local Resident Work Force was a non-profit job training program funded by a federal grant to the United Passaic Organization to act as a placement program for low-income Black residents.
The Herald News bashed the Passaic City Council for allowing Dye to keep his job.
“While Dye has every right to get his life back on track, the council has an obligation to scrutinize his background before giving the UPO federal cash,” a Herald News editorial said.
In 1995, Dye as arrested after “police found six bags of crack cocaine in the car in which he was riding.” Dye claimed to have been falsely accused and told a reporter that the drugs “belonged to someone else.”
Dye was convicted on drug possession and distribution charges and sentenced to six months in prison, The Record reported.
The cocaine arrest came months after Dye was charged with obstruction of justice. The news report said he allegedly gave police a driver license that was not his following a motor vehicle accident.
At some point in 2003, the Herald News included Dye in a “Meet Your Neighbors” feature but did not mention his criminal record.
The Passaic City Council barred Dye from attending council meetings because of his disruptive behavior.
Dye was arrested in 2005 for failing to appear on a previous charge. Police later added a charge of resisting arrest after he became “boisterous and disruptive,” the Herald News reported. He “yelled and struggled throughout the arrest” and “refused to be fingerprinted.”
By the end of the day, Passaic police had added another charge: aggravated assault on a police officer.
“Later still, when Dye was back in his cell block, he allegedly took items from his dinner tray and stuffed them down the toilet,” the newspaper reported. Police added a criminal mischief charge to his collection of complaints.
When Dye ran for the Passaic City Council in 2004 and the Board of Education in 2006, the Herald News did not include any of the controversies surrounding Dye in their reporting of the campaign. The Record did not include Dye’s past in a story about his candidacy for appointment to Marcellus Jackson’s council seat in 2008.
The New Jersey Election Law Enforcement Commission fined Dye $558 for failing to file his campaign finance reports for a 2008 council bid, record show.
Dye was arrested in January 2007 after getting into a physical altercation with three Passaic police officers. He was charged with aggravated assault, The Herald News reported.
The Record and the Herald News reported on Dye’s bids for local office in 2011 and 2013 but did not mention Dye’s history in their coverage of the race. Some of the bylines of those stories included a Record staff writer who was credited with contributing to last week’s article about Dye’s past.
The first run-in with law enforcement for Dye reported by The Record came in 1994 – a front page story for what was then a respected newspaper.
Dye had entered a candy store in Passaic to purchase lottery tickets minutes before the 8 PM drawing. He complained that the shopkeeper, Salem Hassan, had a “lethargic approach to selling litter tickets” and reportedly berated him for moving too slowly.
The Record reported that “the time limit ran out, and the machine refused to accept the numbers.”
“Police said Dye berated the shopkeeper for his negligence, at one point using an obscenity,” The Record reported. “Insulted, Hassen allegedly grabbed a machete he kept under the counter, leaped over the counter, and threatened Dye with it.”