Branchburg police stopped vehicle carrying the three men on Route 202 near Milltown Road around 4 p.m., after someone called police reporting that a man brandished a weapon while heading northbound in Readington, Somerset County Prosecutor Michael H. Robertson said.
Robert Figueroa, 19 of Whitehall, Pennsylvania; Axel Rafael Colon Merly, 18 of Allentown, Pennsylvania; and Miguel Angel Otero Journet, 19 of Bear, Delaware, were charged safely ordered out of the car, Robertson said alongside local authorities.
Officers conducting the motor vehicle stop saw an AR-15 assault rifle and high-capacity magazine in plain view, police said.
The three men of the vehicle were placed under arrest without incident as police executed a search warrant for the vehicle, Robertson said.
The search turned up a Sig Sauer AR-15 rifle along with a 20-round high capacity magazine, which was loaded with 5.56 mm ammunition, authorities said.
All three men were charged in Somerset County with unlawful possession of an assault firearm. They were charged in Hunterdon County with second-degree possession of a weapon of an unlawful purpose and terroristic threats and possession of a high capacity magazine.
Figueroa, Colon Merly and Otero Journet were lodged at the Somerset County Jail pending a bail detention hearing.
Anyone with information relating to this incident is asked to contact the Branchburg Township Police Department at (908) 526-3830 or via the STOPit app.
The STOPit app allows citizens to provide anonymous reports including videos and photos.
STOPit can be downloaded to your smart phone for free at the Google Play Store or Apple App Store, access code: SOMERSETNJ. Information can also be provided through the Somerset County Crime Stoppers’ Tip Line at 1-888-577-TIPS (8477). All anonymous STOPit reports and Crime Stopper tips will be kept confidential.
We are required by the Rules of Court to include herein a statement explaining that the charges are merely an accusation and that the defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty.
Click here to follow Daily Voice Warren Hunterdon and receive free news updates.