Paterson NJ police recently arrested a man accused of possessing an unregistered handgun while driving on a city road.
Police officers made the arrest just after 5:00 a.m. According to law enforcement, Paterson New Jersey patrol cops noticed a motorist swerving between lanes on the roadway and generally driving erratically.
When the Paterson NJ police officers stopped the suspect’s car, a black Ford Fusion with license plates from Pennsylvania, they ran a check on the motor vehicle and discovered that it was not properly registered. The Paterson NJ police officers also found out that the 25-year-old driver had an active arrest warrant. The suspect was subsequently placed under arrest.
While arrested the suspect, police reportedly detected the odor of alcohol coming from the suspect’s vehicle. At one point, a police officer allegedly saw a passenger inside the car attempt to kick an open container of alcohol underneath the backseat.
Later, when the passenger got out of the vehicle, he allegedly had a handgun poking out of shirt pocket. Police subsequently searched the passenger and reportedly found him carrying a defaced black SigSauer 9mm handgun.
The 22-year-old suspect, who is from Paterson, NJ, faces numerous criminal charges, including unlawful possession of a weapon, possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose, and possession of a defaced firearm.
The suspect has also been charged with resisting arrest because he allegedly tried to evade arrest and flee the scene before being subdued by police officers.
If the suspect is ultimately convicted on the illegal handgun possession charges, he would be subject to severe penalties. As set forth by N.J.S.A. 2C:39-5, anyone who knowingly possesses a handgun without having obtained a valid permit to carry the firearm can be charged with a third degree criminal offense. A conviction for third degree unlawful possession of a weapon could result in a sentence of 3-5 years in NJ State Prison.
For more information about this case, read the NJ.com article, “Man Hiding Defaced Gun Tried to Resist Arrest, Cops Say.”