Photo Credit: Courtesy of Ocean County Jail
Dion Marsh

A 28-year-old New Jersey man has pleaded guilty to one count of terrorism in connection with a six-hour series of attacks in Lakewood and Jackson that included ramming three men with his car and stabbing a fourth man, all Orthodox Jews, on April 8, 2022.

Dion Marsh, a resident of Manchester, New Jersey, acknowledged his guilt before Superior Court Judge Guy P. Ryan, according to an announcement by Prosecutor Bradley D. Billhimer.


Chief Trial Attorney Michael Weatherstone is handling the case on behalf of the state. Sentencing is set for March 22. Billhimer told media the state is seeking a prison term of 30 years without parole.

Marsh was indicted in June 2022 by the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office on one charge of terrorism; two counts of carjacking; seven counts of bias intimidation “with a purpose to intimidate an individual or group of individuals because of race, color, religion, gender, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, or ethnicity;” seven counts of bias intimidation “knowing that the conduct constituting the offense would cause an individual or group of individuals to be intimidated because of race, color, religion, gender, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, or ethnicity;” four counts of attempted murder; attempted kidnapping; five counts of possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose, and five counts of unlawful possession of a weapon, the prosecutor’s office said.

When asked by detectives why he had attacked his victims, he told them “It had to be done … These are the real devils.” When asked who he was referring to, Marsh responded, “The Hasidic Jews,” according to court documents.

“The evidence marshaled through the course of this investigation led us to the unmistakable conclusion that these brazen, violent acts were carried out with the purpose of terrorizing the Jewish community in Lakewood and Jackson Townships,” Billhimer said.

“Let no one question our resolve when it comes to fighting hatred and bigotry. To those who would seek to terrorize innocent citizens in Ocean County, our message is simple and clear: we will pursue you, prosecute you, and ultimately convict you. And we will do everything within our power to send you to prison for a very long time.”

“I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, hate has no home in Ocean County,” he said.

“I wish to commend all the law enforcement agencies involved in this investigation, whose combined efforts and teamwork led to this defendant’s swift apprehension — and more than likely saved lives,” Billhimer added.

Marsh also faces federal hate crimes charges for deliberately targeting and attempting to murder Orthodox Jews, simply because they were Jews. The US Attorney’s Office said Wednesday that federal charges remain pending.

Three of the victims were treated and released from a hospital following the attacks. A fourth victim required follow up with admission to a rehabilitation facility for extended care, Billhimer noted.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for, and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.