ROCHELLE PARK, N.J. – A transient involved in a crash and female associate who showed up at the scene Friday morning both assaulted Rochelle Park police while refusing to provide information about themselves -- and were then released without bail by a judge.
Officers eventually had to pepper spray 37-year-old Wayne Hall, a transient primarily based in Hackensack who gave them only his name – and, it turned out, had both an active warrant for his arrest and a suspended driver’s license – following the Central Avenue crash, Lt. Dean Pinto said.
Officer Chris Saldivia asked Hall for his license, registration and insurance information and, instead, got a card from him claiming he had “The Right to Travel, The Right to Mode of Conveyance, The Right to Locomotion, and the police cannot make void the exercise of Rights,” Pinto said.
A short time later, Jameika Hutchison, 34, of Hackensack arrived and began recording with her cellphone, the lieutenant said.
Other officers arrived as Saldivia continued to press Hall for information, Pinto said.
Eventually, the officer determined his identity and found the warrant and license suspension report, he said.
Saldivia tried taking Hall into custody, but he “refused to be handcuffed, refused to comply to verbal commands and began to strike the officers,” Pinto said.
Saldivia, Frank LaBoy and Brendan Stapleton were struggling with Hall when Hutchison “began to interfere and strike the officers and attempt to pull them off of [Hall], who was violently swinging his arms to break free and strike the officers.
“Eventually the officers were able to handcuff Hall, but not until after deploying pepper spray due to Hall’s violent resistant behavior and non-compliance. “
Sgt. Edward Kukalski tried to hold back Hutchison, “but she attempted to strike and physically remove and pull the officers from Hall, at which point she was advised that she was going to be placed under arrest,” Pinto said.
“She began to resist by pulling her arms away and refusing to be handcuffed,” he said. “Officers were eventually able to take her into custody.
“At headquarters she later refused to provide her basic information to police, claiming the police had no right to it.”
She and Hall were taken to Hackensack University Medical Center after both complaining of shoulder pain. Both were later released on summonses pending court appearances.
Hall was charged with three counts of aggravated assault on police, resisting arrest, obstruction of justice and disorderly conduct.
Hutchison was charged with two counts of aggravated assault on police, obstruction and disorderly conduct.
LaBoy sustained a minor bruise on his hand while scuffling with Hall, Pinto said. No other officers were injured, he said.
Chief Robert Flannelly said he was proud of the work.
“My officers showed professionalism and composure in attempting to de-escalate the situation and in dealing with these violent suspects,” he said. “I’m just glad nobody was seriously injured.”