By Karen Zautyk
Following an extensive investigation, Kearny police identified and last week arrested the suspected gunman in the Oct. 9 hold-up attempt at Tullo’s Truck Stop in South Kearny.
Taken into custody Oct. 28 at his home in Irvington was Quashon Dobose, 23, who is charged with robbery, conspiracy, possession of a firearm for unlawful purposes, unlawful possession of a weapon and discharging a firearm.
Dobose and at least one as yet unidentified companion have been linked to a series of five robberies, including two in Jersey City and two in Newark, that occurred in quick succession in the early morning hours of Oct. 9, police said.
The incident in Kearny happened at 3:41 a.m., when a gunman, his identity obscured by a hoodie and a T-shirt pulled over his face, confronted a female attendant in a Tullo’s service station booth off the Lincoln Highway.
Although armed with what appeared to be a silver automatic handgun, he failed to get any money from the worker.
He then turned his attention to a trucker at the pumps, and the attendant reported hearing gunfire.
Police said there was no evidence that anyone had been shot, and the truck driver left the scene before he could be questioned.
The gunman, with at least one cohort, fled in a silvergray Dodge Charger heading toward Newark, where two more gas-station heists were reported within minutes, police said.
The same robber, whose image was caught on security video, was also reportedly tied to similar crimes in Jersey City just before the Tullo’s hit.
Kearny Det. Michael Gonzalez, who was in charge of the follow-up investigation, recovered physical evidence at both Tullo’s and, while working with the Newark PD, at one of the crime scenes in that city, KPD Chief John Dowie said.
A car, which had been impounded in Newark, was ID’d by Kearny Det. Ray Lopez as the Dodge Charger seen fleeing Tullo’s.
Dobose was developed as a suspect, and on Oct. 25, a warrant was issued for his arrest.
At 5:30 a.m., Oct. 28, an arrest team comprising Gonzalez, Lopez, fellow Kearny officers Det. Lt. Anthony Gouveia and Det. Bryant Obie, along with members of the Newark and Jersey City police departments, converged on Dobose’s residence in Irvington and took him into custody.
His bail was set at $150,000 and he was remanded to jail, authorities reported.
Police said Dobose has an arrest record involving charges of drug possession and distribution, robbery and assault.
As for the mystery trucker at Tullo’s, Gonzalez tracked him down thanks to surveillance video and gas receipts. He was found in Garfield.
He reportedly told police that the gunman had confronted him and started to check his pockets, but he said he had no money on him.
“Do you think I’m f—— playing?” the robber said, and then proceeded to fire a round into the ground at the victim’s feet. The truck driver was not hit.
As to why he had left the scene instead of waiting for the police, the trucker is quoted as replying, “Time is money.”