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Palisades Park police arrest legless driver after finding gun, ammo in SUV

Photo Credit: Courtesy PALISADES PARK PD

ANOTHER CVP EXCLUSIVE: A legless female driver was being held on $50,000 bail in the Bergen County Jail after Palisades Park police said they found her carrying a gun this morning.

A concerned citizen called at 9:35 a.m. to report man suspiciously “going in and out of” a blue 2001 Ford Explorer parked at corner of Delia Boulevard and East Columbia Avenue, Police Chief Benjamin Ramos told CLIFFVIEW PILOT .

Approaching the car, Officers Salvatore Farnese and Alessandro Monteleone smelled a “strong odor of marijuana” from inside and spotted a joint in plain view in the center console, the chief said.

Joined by Sgt. Dennis Pavlik, the officers asked 23-year-old Michele V. Williams of East Orange for consent to search the vehicle after her passenger, Janal R. Rackley, 24, of Jersey City, told them he had marijuana in an Altoids box, Ramos said.

The officers found a marijuana grinder with pot leaves inside, rolling papers and a small amount of precription pills, among other items, when they stopped the search at Williams’ request so that they could remove the prosthetics from the vehicle for her, he said.

The search resumed after Monteleone put the legs in his police cruiser, the chief said.

Officers were awaiting a Bergen County Sheriff’s K-9 unit when Monteleone found a black bag behind the driver’s seat that contained a .380-caliber silver and black Cobra pistol and 50 rounds of ammunition, both belonging to Williams, he said.

Sheriff’s Officer Robert Mantone’s partner, Mike, later led officers to a backpack in the rear of the vehicle that contained two bags of marijuana and another grinder, Ramos said.

Williams and Rackley were taken into custody and the vehicle towed, he said.

Williams was being held on $50,000 in the Bergen County Jail on weapons possession charges.

Rackley was released on a summons for a July 30 court hearing on charges of possession of both the drugs and paraphernalia.

MUGSHOTS: Courtesy PALISADES PARK PD

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