CLIFTON, N.J. -- A driver called Clifton police after two would-be thieves opened the door of his car with him still in it -- flooding the area with officers who said they found two Paterson men suspected in a spree of car burglaries trying to hide.
As he and his colleagues responded to the 3:45 a.m. call in the 100 block of Edison Street, Officer Thomas Sucameli spotted 20-year-old Luis Gutierrez of Paterson ducking behind a vehicle and arrested him, Detective Lt. Robert Bracken said Wednesday.
Sgt. Gene Hayes found the second suspect -- later identified as Rasheed Barr, 26, also of Paterson -- hiding in the backseat of a vehicle he'd been burglarizing near Albion Park, Bracken said.
Barr and Gutierrez were charged with burglary.
Gutierrez also was charged with possession of a knife, pot and drug paraphernalia.
Barr also had a knife and tried giving police a false name -- for which he was charged on both counts, the lieutenant said.
"Numerous vehicles were burglarized overnight in the vicinity of where these two were caught," Bracken said. "Detectives are currently working on determining if these suspects were responsible for these acts."
Meanwhile, the pair was released, under New Jersey's 2017 bail reform law, pending detention hearings.