Lyndhurst police say Kearny man was asleep at the wheel, car was in drive

A Kearny man driving on Ridge Road in Lyndhurst was arrested after he allegedly fell asleep at the wheel all while the car was still in gear, Det. Lt. Vincent Auteri, the Lyndhurst PD’s public-information officer, said.

According to Auteri:

On May 28, 2024, at approximately 3:43 p.m., Dets. Matt Giunta and Tom McSweeney were in the area of Page Avenue and Ridge Road when they noticed traffic had suddenly come to a standstill. Shortly thereafter, they observed several vehicles maneuvering around a car stopped on Ridge Road in the northbound lane at the traffic light. At first, they believed the vehicle may have been disabled.

Giunta and McSweeney then approached the vehicle and learned the driver, Anthony Desantis, 57, of Kearny, was instead asleep at the wheel while the vehicle was still in the drive position. Det. Giunta woke Desantis before having him place the vehicle into park.

After speaking to Desantis, Det. Giunta believed Desantis was driving while impaired. Desantis denied being under the influence of drugs or alcohol so the detectives then requested Desantis to exit the vehicle and, shortly thereafter, a clear plastic bag containing a white powdery substance believed to be cocaine, was found resting on the driver’s side floor board.

A further search of Desantis’ person by Officer Vincent Dorio revealed him to be in possession of a clear plastic straw and 18 empty wax paper folds containing a white powdery residue suspected to be heroin.

Desantis was subsequently arrested and transported to LPD headquarters.  While there, Desantis was subjected to a breathalyzer exam but he refused to be evaluated by a drug recognition officer.  Desantis was charged with possession of cocaine and possession of drug paraphernalia before being released.  He also received summonses for driving while under the influence, delaying traffic and driving with a suspended license. His vehicle was impounded.

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