A Saddle River patrol officer on the lookout for car thieves caught a fugitive sex offender wanted out of Rockland County sleeping in his car, authorities said.
Michael Rosen, 32, of Washington Township, remained held Wednesday in the Bergen County Jail pending extradition proceedings on a fugitive warrant issued by a judge in New City.
Saddle River Police Officer Diana Golonek was on patrol when she spotted a 2009 Audi sedan parked with its high beams on and temporary license tags on Chestnut Ridge Road around 5 a.m. Tuesday, Police Chief Jason Cosgriff said.
It being a prime time of day for car thefts, Golonek looked closer.
Noticing two men sleeping inside, she summoned Sgt. Jason Nunn as backup, Cosgriff said.
A computer check found that Rosen, the passenger, owns the car – and that he was wanted, the chief said.
Rosen was sentenced to probation in June 2019 in Rockland in exchange for a guilty plea to criminal sexual contact with a victim under 17 whom he met on a dating app, records show.
He was arrested on drug charges in August and then again less than two weeks later, records show. Each time a judge ordered him released from the county jail less than 24 hours later.
The arrests violated the terms of probation for Rosen, who’s registered under Megan’s Law in New Jersey as a Tier 2 (moderate risk) sex offender.
With authorities unable to find him, a Rockland County judge issued a warrant for Rosen’s arrest.
Golonek and Nunn took it from there.
The River Vale driver was released without charges while Rosen was sent to BCJ, Cosgriff said.
“This was good police work,” the chief said. “With all the car thefts and burglaries in the area, our officers are always on the street keeping an eye out. This what happens when they do.”
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