A Haledon man who had deliveries sent to a Paterson location so he could swipe cash from drivers had the tables turned when a would-be victim overpowered him and called police, authorities said.
In doing so, the driver for a Turkish-Mediterranean restaurant in Totowa helped city police crack a string of thefts from drivers from various local eateries.
Walter Pardo, 29, had the deliveries made each time to the same Granite Avenue address while claiming that he needed the driver to bring change because he only had a $100 bill, Public Safety Director Jerry Speziale said.
Once the driver arrived, Pardo approached from a side yard, said the food was for him, then snatched any money the driver pulled out for change before running off, Speziale said.
The spree began on Oct. 17 with an order to Lefty’s Pizza on Crooks Avenue.
The next day, he did it again, this time grabbing money from a driver for Pomodoro Pizzeria on 1st Avenue, the director said.
A day after that, a driver for Banana King on 21st Avenue was victimized.
This past Friday, Pardo snatched money from a driver for Biagio’s Pizza in Fair Lawn, Speziale said.
Pardo got violent on Saturday when he pulled a small pocket knife and ran off after the driver from Casa Mia Pizzeria on Totowa Avenue chased him down, the director said.
The eight-day spree ended Sunday afternoon, when a driver for Durum Doner in Totowa grabbed a fleeing Pardo and held onto him, Speziale said.
Police charged Pardo with theft in connection with four incidents, attempted theft in Sunday’s incident and first-degree robbery and weapons counts for Saturday’s holdup.
Detective Sgt. Michael Urena and Detectives Tiffany Marino, Salvador Brancato Jr. and James Favia are working the case.
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