Essex County Authorities Arrest East Orange Man With Loaded Gun

Newark – A former felon who was on pretrial release for a previous crime was arrested last night by Essex County sheriff’s detectives and Irvington police on gun charges.

Sheriff Armando Fontoura stated that the law enforcement task force was conducting proactive patrols on Thursday evening in the area of 11th Avenue and South 8th Street when they observed a 2002 Jeep Grand Cherokee stopped at that intersection.

“The driver, Okbar Gillen, 21, of East Orange, placed the vehicle in reverse and backed down South 8th Street in a careless manner and against on-coming vehicular traffic,” Sheriff Fontoura said.

The officers activated their overhead lights and sirens in executing a motor vehicle stop. “As our detectives approached, they could see Gillen fumbling around with an item in his front waistband,” Fontoura added. “When the suspect could not produce a valid driver’s license he was asked to step out of the Jeep and place his hands on the top of the car.”

Authorities said ignoring directions, Gillen allegedly continued to reach for his waistband. “At that point, he was handcuffed and terry-frisked for officer safety,” the sheriff noted. “The pat-down search yielded a fully loaded, .40 caliber, Taurus semi-automatic handgun from Gillen’s front waistband.”

Police charged Gillens with the unlawful possession of a weapon, possession of a weapon by a convicted felon and contempt of a judicial order.

Police also issued Gillens a motor vehicle summonses for careless driving and for being an unlicensed driver.

The suspect was lodged at the county jail where he awaits a bail hearing.