Vehicle stop turns up gun, ammo

ALSO: Two alleged drunk driving arrests

A 20-year-old West New York resident was arrested in North Bergen Sunday after a motor vehicle stop led police to confiscate a 9 mm handgun, rounds of ammunition, a stun gun in the shape of brass knuckles, knives, and drugs, police said.
According to Commander of the Detective Bureau Lt. Frank Cannella, Police Officer Dino Apostolakos witnessed Joseph Puente, 20, of West New York, allegedly driving approximately 50 miles per hour in a 25 mph zone. After the officer conducted a motor vehicle stop, he approached the 2001 black Land Rover and asked Puente for the vehicle’s paperwork. Puente told the officer it wasn’t his vehicle, Cannella said.


The stun gun was in the shape of brass knuckles.

“Yo man, I was just making my way to McDonald’s, and I don’t have a license,” Puente allegedly told Apostolakos, according to the police report.
Cannella said that Puente was asked to exit the vehicle so that the officer could attempt to find the paperwork. The glove box contained what appeared to be a plastic object in the shape of brass knuckles. Police said they determined later that this was a 95,000-volt stun gun.
After Puente was arrested, police said they found a digital scale with a white powdery substance on it that appeared to be a narcotic.
They also found what appeared to be two bags, allegedly containing cocaine and marijuana, in Puente’s pocket. They also found a three inch knife that was allegedly in one of his pockets.
Police then asked for Puente’s consent to search the vehicle. They found a black book bag behind the driver’s seat which they said allegedly contained a black Springfield 9 mm handgun loaded with 10 rounds of ammunition, another round of ammunition, and a double-sided 6-inch blade in a sheath.
Cannella said Puente was charged with possession of a handgun and several other weapons charges. His bail was placed at $50,000 with a 10 percent option, which he posted, so he was released.
Cannella said that an investigation is ongoing.

Blood alcohol content allegedly .12

Miguel Velez, 37, of Jersey City was arrested and charged with DWI, failure to exhibit a valid insurance card, and crossing the double yellow line while driving.
Cannella said that on Dec. 31 at 2:20 a.m., Detective Peter Insetta conducted a motor vehicle stop at 47th Street after watching Velez allegedly drift across the double yellow lines into traffic at 63rd Street and Kennedy Boulevard.
Insetta asked Velez for his paperwork, which he allegedly fumbled for and couldn’t find.
“Velez continued questioning Det. Insetta on why he was being stopped,” said Cannella.
When asked if he had been drinking that night, Velez said that he had only been drinking water, before laughing and telling Insetta that if he thought he was drunk, he could test him, according to the police report.
After being unable to complete a field sobriety test, he was transported to headquarters, where his blood alcohol content was tested. It came up as .12 percent, police allege. The legal limit is .08 percent.
His car was towed and he was released on a summons, said Cannella.

Police apprehend man for DWI

According to Cannella, Raul Velazquez Miranda, 34, of Heightsville, Md., was arrested for driving while intoxicated on Jan. 2 around 12:30 a.m.
Police Officer William Fleischhauer was operating radar on Kennedy Boulevard and 70th Street when he observed Miranda allegedly driving at 35 mph, as opposed to the 25 mph speed limit.
After conducting a motor vehicle stop, the officer noticed a strong odor of alcoholic beverage allegedly on Miranda’s breath and asked him to exit the vehicle.
Miranda was allegedly unable to perform the field sobriety test property. After being arrested for DWI, his car was towed and he was released on a summons.
Tricia Tirella may be reached at

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