Essex County Residents Among Four Arrested After Leading Officers on Chase, Dragging Clifton Officer with Car
Four people who left the local Applebee’s without paying led to a car chase, a trooper being dragged and a crash.
According to authorities, last night at approximately 6:30 p.m., officers responded to Applebees, located at 375 Rt. 3 East, for a report of theft of services.
Officials say, four individuals - two females and two males - had reportedly accumulated a tab and left without rendering payment. Although they all fled on foot toward the Stop and Shop, one of the males was detained by employees within a short distance from the restaurant.
The three additional suspects remained at large, and as a result, responding patrol units began searching the area. A short time later, a Toyota Prius, which was occupied by both female suspects, was spotted and stopped while driving the wrong way near the Entrance/Exit to the Clifton Commons.
While Clifton officers were interviewing the females, there was an initial discrepancy as to their identity, since they did not entirely match the description provided. It was subsequently determined that the reason for this discrepancy, was that the females had been wearing wigs inside the restaurant.
At this time, one of the officers was in the process of retrieving the driver's credentials, when he observed the wigs inside the vehicle. Once the driver realized that the officer spotted the wigs, she began to speed away while the officer's arm was still inside the vehicle. She dragged the officer approximately 50 feet before he was able to free himself from the fleeing vehicle.
At that time, a motor vehicle pursuit began with additional responding units giving chase. The pursuit continued at high speeds eastbound on Route 3 and then onto the Turnpike South. At one point, one of the units was involved in a motor vehicle accident with a third party vehicle.
The pursuit continued on the Turnpike and eventually onto Route 280 West; during which time the driver continued to operate the vehicle recklessly and at high speeds. Officials say the pursuit continued onto Bergen Avenue in Kearny, at which time the suspect vehicle struck a third party vehicle head-on.
Police say the suspect vehicle sustained heavy front end damage, however, the driver still refused to stop and continued onto a dead end street and eventually into an elementary schoolyard in Kearny, where a brick wall prohibited the vehicle from traveling any further.
Officials say, Sergeant Joshin Smith - the only unit still involved in the pursuit - was was able to place both female suspects into custody.
The two female suspects were subsequently transported to the department headquarters where they were processed and charged. The male party, who had been initially detained by employees, and the second male suspect, who had been arrested in the Clifton Commons by a Clifton unit while the pursuit was taking place, were also conveyed to headquarters and charged accordingly.
The suspects were later identified as:
Chante Royal, 19, of Montclair (Driver), who was charged with Aggravated Assault with a Weapon, Eluding, Aggravated Assault on Police, Robbery, and CDS related charges.
Jasmine Ramsey, 18, of Orange, who was charged with Theft of Services.
Dellmicah Dennis, 18, of East Orange, who was charged with Theft of Services
Damian Negron, 18, of Montclair, who was charged with Theft of Services and Hindering Apprehension.
Officials say the extent of injuries, which are not being classified as serious, are being evaluated this morning.