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Copper thief in stolen pickup hospitalized after eating 30 bags of heroin, Paramus police say

Photo Credit: Courtesy PARAMUS PD

YOU READ IT HERE FIRST: A driver arrested along with another man moments after they stole copper wire from a Route 17 AT&T storage lot while driving a stolen pickup truck was hospitalized after revealing that he’d just eaten 30 bags of heroin, Paramus police said.

Officer Joshua Capizzi spotted the 2004 Dodge Ram pickup emerge from behind the Petco Store on the highway’s northbound side around 2:30 a.m. Tuesday, Police Chief Kenneth Ehrenberg said this afternoon.

A computer check showed the vehicle stolen out of Rochelle Park 10 days ago, so officers pulled it over on Sears Drive just off the highway, he said.

Both occupants bolted, and officers quickly grabbed the passenger, identified as Robert Kwiatkowski, 52, of Wayne, Ehrenberg said.

Backup Officers Dan Derienzo and Jon Umanzor found the driver — 42-year-old Michael Pelissier of Hackensack — hiding beneath a nearby parked car, he said.

He told the officers he’d just ingested the heroin and was taken to Bergen Regional Medical Center, Ehrenberg said.

“Located in the vehicle were several large spools of copper wire, assorted power tools and hand tools,” the chief said. “Officers also observed several bundles of heroin and several hypodermic needles.”

Both men were being held on $5,000 bail in the Bergen County Jail, charged with possession of heroin, stolen property and drug paraphernalia.

Pelissier also was charged with eluding.


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