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Guns, pot in Mahwah stop fake, charges real

Photo Credit: Courtesy Mahwah PD

Both the guns and the pot that Mahwah police found a couple of out-of-towners carrying during a traffic stop on Route 17 were fake, but the charges against them were real, Police Chief James N. Batelli said.

Officer Ryan Hill pulled them over after spotting their four-door Chrysler – with Florida license plates – cut off another motorist in the highway’s southbound lanes, Batelli said.

The driver, 22-year-old Samantha DeJesus of Nahant, MA didn’t have a license on her, the chief said.

Passenger Benjamin Reed, 23, meanwhile, showed the officer a Florida driver’s license even though he, too, lives in Nahant, he said.

Reed also told Hill that what looked like pot in the passenger seat was actually synthetic marijuana that goes by the brand name “Spice,” Batelli said.

“Spice” and all the various products sold as fake pot are illegal in New Jersey – and treated under criminal statutes as if they were the genuine article.

Hill also had what looked like track marks on his hand, consistent with shooting up heroin, the chief said.

With their permission to search the vehicle, Batelli said, the officer found two imitation firearms – one that looked like a Beretta handgun and the other an AR-15 rifle.

He also turned up several hypodermic syringes, spoons, cotton swabs, glass bongs, pipes and other narcotics paraphernalia, along with a digital scale, a jar full of “Spice” and a bag of pills, the chief said.

Among the charges filed by Mahwah police: possession of an imitation firearm (two counts), and possession of synthetic pot, drug paraphernalia and prescription pills. DeJesus also received several motor vehicle summonses, Batelli said.

Both were released pending grand jury action.

MUGSHOTS: Courtesy Mahwah PD

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