ROCHELLE PARK, N.J. – A Union County man snatched up three dozen orange traffic cones and a police barricade before Rochelle Park police said they stopped his pickup truck.
A fire prevention officer called the cops just before 11 a.m. Saturday after Jackie K. Purnell Jr., 55, grabbed a couple of township DPW cones from around a tree that is pending work in front of a Crescent Street home, Lt. Dean Pinto said.
Officers Brendan Stapleton, Frank LaBoy, Chris Salidvia and Sgt. Ed Kukalski stopped the Ford F150 pickup, which had New York license plates and “Hylan Datacom and Electrical” on the side, Pinto said.
In the bed were three dozen cones – several marked “Con Edison” and the barricade, he said.
Officers also smelled pot inside the pickup and found a clear bottle containing some, Pinto said.
Purnell put the two cones back, telling police that he “takes these items when he sees them on the side of the road [because] he believes ‘they are abandoned’,” the lieutenant said.
He was arrested and the truck was impounded. The cones were seized as evidence.
Police released Purnell on a court summons charging him with theft, receiving stolen property and marijuana possession.
The defendant was released on a criminal summons pending a court appearance.