Two-vehicle crash injures two at Kearny intersection

Photo by Ron Leir
Emergency personnel respond to accident along Rt. 1&9 on Saturday, Nov. 3.


Two people were injured after their vehicle was struck near Tullo’s Truck Stop, Central Avenue and Truck Rt. 1&9, in Kearny on Saturday, Nov. 3.

Police said the accident took place shortly before 11:15 a.m. when a Strohmann Bakery delivery truck traveling north on Central turned left to access the highway and, in doing so, came across the southbound lane where it was in collision with a southbound car driven by a 41-year-old North Arlington woman.

The impact of the crash, with the truck hitting the operator’s side, trapped the driver and her passenger, a 40-year-old Jersey City man, police said.

Both occupants of the stricken vehicle were taken by ambulance to Clara Maass Medical Center, Belleville, for treatment of their injuries, police said. As of press time, no further information was readily available about their condition.

Both the truck and car were towed from the scene.

No motor vehicle summonses were issued, police said.

The mishap occurred as dozens of motorists were lined up to get gas on the first day of the even/odd system mandated by Gov. Chris Christie for gas purchases in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. Other incidents logged during the past week by Kearny P.D. included the following:

Nov. 8

Two Newark men were charged with shoplifting at the ShopRite on Passaic Avenue. Police said store security detained Kenneth Goode, 43, and Derek Barnes, 48, as the pair allegedly tried to leave the store with $423 worth of cold medications concealed in a black plastic bag without paying at 1 p.m. Police said Goode was wanted on an outstanding $500 warrant from Bloomfield.

Nov. 7

Police said they found a Colonia man asleep, with his seat reclined, at the wheel of his vehicle while it was stopped in the intersection at Schuyler and Seeley aves. at 10:30 p.m. with its flashers on. Police said they detected a strong odor of alcohol inside the car and saw an open bottle of vodka in the center console. The driver, Steven Sears, 32, was charged with DWI, operating a motor vehicle while in possession of an open container of alcohol and refusal to take an Alcotest.

Nov. 6

A Kearny man in his 20s was found lying on the sidewalk at Kearny Avenue and Afton Street with his face covered in blood and in severe pain at 2 a.m. After a witness gave police a description of someone suspected of beating the victim, Officer Ben Wuelfing searched the area and found a man matching that description on Chestnut Street. That man, police said, had blood on his clothes and a bruise on his right hand. After the man was positively identified by the witness, police placed him under arrest. Jorgito Munoz, 22, of Kearny, was charged with aggravated assault. Police said the victim was taken to the University of Medicine & Dentistry of New Jersey in Newark for treatment.

Nov. 5

Police said a suspected marijuana distributor was put out of business with the arrest of Alfonso Vargas, 20, of Kearny, in the 90 block of Schuyler Avenue at 7:30 p.m. Police said Vargas was confronted by vice detectives as he entered his car at that location and the vice cops detected a strong odor of suspected raw marijuana inside the car. After the detectives asked him about that, police said Vargas turned over a large bag containing marijuana. Police said they found $50 in the car’s center console and a search of Vargas’ apartment turned up more than $1,000 in suspected drug proceeds and records reflecting a suspected drug distribution setup. Inside the car’s trunk, police said they found four bags of marijuana, two digital scales and numerous Ziploc bags typically used for packaging marijuana. Vargas was charged with possession of marijuana with intent to distribute and possession of drug paraphernalia and held on $50,000 cash only bail.

Oct. 31

A potential hostage situation was defused in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. At 10:30 p.m. police said Officer Mike Santucci responded to a report of a woman being held against her will in a fourth-floor Belgrove Drive apartment. Police said Santucci knocked, identified himself as a cop, heard a woman screaming for help, then heard a man reply he wouldn’t open the door. Police said Santucci then forced his way into an apartment left dark by a power outage and was attacked by the man. A struggle ensued, with furniture being knocked over, and Santucci managed to handcuff one of the man’s hands as backup Officer Tom Pontrella arrived and helped subdue the man. Police said the man, who was drunk, was carried from the apartment and placed under arrest. Jonathan Valle, 24, of Kearny, was charged with false imprisonment, obstruction of justice, resisting arrest and aggravated assault on a police officer. Oct. 30 John Porras, 25, of Kearny, was charged with criminal mischief after police said he was discovered kicking the tire of a vehicle parked in the 700 block of Elm Street at 11:30 p.m. When Officer Jay Balogh asked what he was doing, police said Porras screamed: “I didn’t do nothing. Leave me alone!”

Oct. 29

A Newark man was arrested after police said he was observed kicking the door of a liquor store at Kearny and Johnston aves. at 3 a.m. When confronted by Officer Derek Hemphill, police said an intoxicated Francisco Nieves, 38, took a fighting stance and declared: “If you weren’t wearing that badge, I’d kick your ass!” Nieves was charged with disorderly conduct, criminal mischief and possession of an open container of alcohol.

Oct. 28

Responding to a report about a man shouting vulgarities in the street, Officer Brian Wisely drove to Midland and Kearny aves. at 4:30 p.m. and urged the man to stop. Then, as he began driving away, police said the man cursed him. When Wisely returned to confront the man, police said Lawrence Handlin, 23, of Kearny, began grappling with the officer who forced Handlin to the ground and cuffed one hand before both ended up rolling around on the street. Ultimately, police said, Wisely and a backup officer subdued Handlin, who was charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.

– Ron Leir

The Observer Staff