Five occupants of a stolen minivan bailed out, tossing handguns as they went, after it crashed into a parked car during a brief but wild Haledon police pursuit. One of them, a 19-year-old Teaneck man, was caught. The rest fled.
Officer Jeffrey Welsh had tried stopping the speeding Honda Odyssey, reported stolen out of Garfield, in the 100 block of Cliff Street shortly before 8:30 p.m. Monday, Capt. George Guzman said.
The driver ignored Welsh’s emergency lights and sirens and sped off, ultimately losing control and crashing on Legion Place off Lee Avenue, Guzman said.
All five occupants bolted, tossing three handguns into the street as they fled, he said.
A resident who was sitting in back of his home with his two young boys jumped up when the crash occurred next door. Home security video shows him hustling them both into the house as one of the suspects runs by them.
Arrested after a brief struggle, Guzman said, was Brian Stengel of Teaneck. His four companions were in the wind.
Haledon police recovered:
- a .40-caliber Glock Model 23 loaded with 14 hollow-point bullets in a high capacity magazine;
- a .45-caliber Millennium handgun loaded with nine bullets;
- a 9mm P80 handgun with a defaced serial number.
Stengel was charged with resisting arrest and weapons offenses and sent to the Passaic County Jail.
Meanwhile, police continued trying to identify and locate the other four.
Establishing a perimeter during the initial search were
Haledon Police Sgt. Frank Conca, Officer Semir Celoski and Special Polices Officers Wassim Helwani and Special Police Officer Kyle Tenis, along with members of the Passaic County Sheriff’s Office, William Paterson University Police Department and Prospect Park and Wayne police.
“The seizure of these weapons and ammunition may have averted a potential tragedy," Guzman said.
They’ve been submitted to New Jersey State Police for ballistics testing, he said.
Police Chief Angelo J. Daniele thanked the various agencies for their assistance.
ALSO SEE: A stolen car chase that began in Wayne and continued through Bergen County on Wednesday ended in a crash and the capture of two suspects on the New York State Thruway nearly 40 miles away, authorities confirmed. READ MORE….
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