According to Passaic County public safety director, Jerry Speziale, Paterson Police officers chased down and arrested a suspect with a loaded handgun on Sunday. Police officer Mohammad Bashir was patrolling the area at the intersection of Rosa Parks Boulevard and Putnam street where a large group of people were observed drinking, smoking, and playing loud music. The alleged suspect, Jacim Pitts became alarmed when he noticed the police car and began walking away from the group towards Lyon Street. When Officer Bashir pulled up along side of him and asked him to talk, he turned around began heading in the opposite direction. The officer then, exited his vehicle at which time Pitts allegedly began fleeing, and a chase ensued. As he was running, he threw the handgun over the fence of 96 lyon Street.
Officer Jon Dabal ran into the street to intercept Pitts and he was eventually apprehended and handcuffed. The allegedly discarded weapon, a Glock Model 23 (loaded with four rounds) was discovered on the side lawn of 96 Lyon Street. The weapon was stolen out of Sumter County, South Carolina according to police. Pitts was arrested and transferred to St. Joseph’s Regional Medical Center for minor injuries, he was treated and released. Pitts was charged with obstructing a governmental function, resisting arrest, unlawful possession of a weapon, possession of a weapon for unlawful purposes, and several other weapons related offenses. Click here to read more at www.patersontimes.com.
Unlawful Possession of a weapon, specifically a handgun, is a second degree crime under N.J.S.A. 2C:39-5. The penalties if convicted of a second degree charge can be very severe. A crime of the second degree is punishable by a term of imprisonment of between 5 and 10 years in New Jersey State Prison. A conviction under this statute may be subject to sentencing under the Graves Act meaning that an individual convicted of such an offense must be sentenced to a term of imprisonment with a minimum term of parole ineligibility fixed at, or between, one-third to one-half of a sentence imposed, or 3 years, whichever is greater.
If you or a loved one is charged with unlawful possession of a weapon, you should contact a criminal defense attorney immediately, especially given the potential prison sentence associated with a conviction. Former Morris County Prosecutor, Alissa D. Hascup is skilled and experienced at representing countless clients charged with the entire range of weapons offenses throughout the state of New Jersey in towns like Paterson, Clifton, and Passaic. She is committed to ensuring your rights are protected in court. Contact her office for a free consultation about your case. She is available 24/7 at 862-257-1200.