Two members of a vehicle theft ring out of Essex County told Cresskill police that they weren’t familiar with the area but “knew there were good cars here” after they were captured, authorities said.
A resident flagged down a passing Cresskill officer around 3 a.m. Tuesday, saying that he’d seen the thieves in his car.
Moments later, Sgt. Jeremy Luciano spotted a suspicious vehicle on a nearby side street, Detective John Birnie said.
As the sergeant approached, he said, the driver hit the gas, nearly hitting a police cruiser driven by Officer Michael Polling as the vehicle sped off.
The car – which had been reported stolen out of Morristown -- went down a dead end, where the occupants bailed out and ran through nearby yards, the detective said.
Several Northern Valley police departments converged in a perimeter. A Bergen County sheriff’s K-9 was summoned to assist.
Rasheem Bond, 20, of East Orange, was found hiding in a screened porch, Birnie said.
A short time later, Closter Police Sgt. Joseph Baldomero found Akmid Henderson, also 20 from East Orange, walking on Homans Avenue in Closter, wet and covered in grass, he said.
Henderson was also wearing an ankle monitoring bracelet as a result of previous arrests, Birnie said.
As police arrested them, other members of their crew were stealing two other vehicles in Cresskill, he noted.
Bond and Henderson “did not know much about the area, but they said that they knew there were good cars here,” Birnie said.
Police charged both with eluding and receiving stolen property and Bond with burglary and sent them to the Bergen County Jail.
Birnie asked that any residents who may have surveillance footage of any suspicious activity near their vehicles from Monday night into Tuesday morning contact him: (201) 568-1400.
He also reminded owners to always lock their vehicles and take their keys or fobs wherever and whenever they park.
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