HALEDON, N.J. -- A Woodland Park passenger in a cab stopped for an improper turn was carrying 5,000 envelopes of heroin for sale -- leading to the discovery of two stolen handguns, one of them loaded, said Haledon police who arrested him Wednesday night.
Officer Jeffrey Welsh stopped the Lincoln Town and Country Taxicab on Oxford Street just before midnight for "for failing to properly signal a turn and having inoperable rear license plate light bulbs," Lt. George Guzman said.
Welsh noticed that the rear-seat passenger -- Adrian Rodriguez, 23 -- wasn't wearing a seat belt, so he asked him for identification, Guzman said.
After discovering that Rodriguez gave him a false name Welsh summoned backup, to which Officer John Bonilla, Special Police Officer Michael Moor and Sgt. Tim Lindberg responded, the lieutenant said.
Rodriguez was arrested for hindering -- after which police found him carrying 100 bricks of heroin, Guzman said.
The stop triggered a subsequent investigation that eventually turned up the handguns, the lieutenant said. Both were verified stolen and were being submitted for ballistic analysis, he said.
Rodriguez remained held on drug charges Thursday in the Passaic County Jail pending a detention hearing.
"I commend my officers for their superb team work in handling this case," Chief Angelo J. Daniele said. "The Haledon Police Department remains committed to the proposition of proactive police initiatives and our zero tolerance policy for criminal activity."
Guzman asked that any other law enforcement agencies who may be interested in Rodriguez contact Detective Sgt. George Kelly or Detective Michael Palmer at (973) 790-4444 .
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