Armed Drug Suspect Driving Wrong Way Arrested

Newark – An armed suspect, driving south in the northbound lanes of McCarter Highway crashed his vehicle into a concrete wall on Friday, was arrested by Essex County sheriff’s detectives and arraigned today.

Sheriff Armando Fontoura stated that officers from his department’s Bureau of Narcotics were on quality of life patrol in the area of Mulberry and Chestnut Streets Friday afternoon when they observed the driver of a 1999 Buick LeSabre operating his vehicle in a reckless manner by weaving in and out of traffic.

When the sheriff’s BON detectives attempted to conduct a motor vehicle stop by activating their overhead lights and sirens the driver of the Buick, later identified as Alvin Johnson, age 38 of Rahway, fled the scene at a high rate of speed and began traveling south on Route 21 in the northbound lanes.

When Johnson turned to drive east on Chestnut Street, a one-way westbound street, he lost control of his vehicle and crashed it into the concrete wall of an underpass.

The suspect then leaped out of the Buick and attempted to run on foot from the scene. He was quickly tackled to the ground in a nearby parking lot and placed under arrest.

Fontoura said that when the BON detectives returned to the Buick they could plainly see a blue shoe box that had spilled its contents onto the front passenger’s floorboard. The box contained a loaded, .38 caliber, Walther PPK semi-automatic handgun, 250 glassine envelopes of heroin, stamped “BUGSY” in red ink, and 11 grams of ‘crack’ cocaine.

Johnson was charged with one count of the unlawful possession of a weapon, possession of a weapon while committing a narcotics offense, possession of a weapon by a convicted felon, resisting arrest, eluding police, possession of CDS in a motor vehicle, reckless driving and two counts each of possession of a controlled dangerous substance and possession of CDS with intent to distribute

At today’s arraignment, Judge Marilyn E. Williams ordered Johnson held at the county jail in lieu of $250,000 cash bond only.