PATERSON, N.J. -- A routine check of a group of loiterers drinking on a street corner led to the discovery of a loaded gun -- and an arrest following a brief chase, Passaic County Sheriff Richard H. Berdnik said.
Sheriff's officers Martin Sanabria and Jason Michaels approached the group at the corner of 12th Avenue and East 24th Street around 3:30 a.m. Sunday, Berdnik said.
Michaels spotted a man -- later identified as 25-year-old Michael Espino of Paterson -- "walking at a fast pace toward East 25th Street," he said.
As Michaels began to get out of his car, Espino took off, the sheriff said.
Michaels followed him in the car, then retrieved a chrome 9mm semi-automatic handgun that Berdnik said Espino tossed away.
Meanwhile, Officer Martin Sanabria followed Espino in his car before grabbing him with help from Cpl. Craig Goodson and Officer Kelly Lincoln, he said.
Espino was charged with resisting arrest and weapons possession.
He remained held in the Passaic County Jail early Monday pending a detention hearing.
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