Three Mahwah teenagers and an 18-year-old from New York were arrested in Mahwah after they allegedly broke into an empty condominium with marijuana and drug paraphernalia, and led cops on a foot chase through several township backyards Friday evening, police said Monday.
According to Mahwah Police Chief Jim Batelli, Mahwah Officers William Hunt and David Vega responded to a vacant condo unit on Thoreau Court after neighbors reported possible drug use and smells coming from one of the units. According to police, the five teenagers in the unit fled when cops knocked on the door, and ran through nearby backyards, prompting 911 calls from several local residents.
Mahwah cops called for backup from Bergen County and Ramsey police.
After a foot chase, two of the teens – a 14 and a 16 year old – were apprehended by Mahwah Police, and another two – a 16 and an 18-year-old – were apprehended by Ramsey Police, Batelli said. A fifth teenager was not caught, he said.
The 18-year-old told police he got a key to the empty condo unit from a friend, Batelli said. During a subsequent search of the unit, police found marijuana, rolling papers, a metal smoking pipe, metal grinder and other drug paraphernalia, Batelli said.
The 18-year-old, Nicholas Ferrogari, of Florida, NY, was charged with criminal trespassing, resisting arrest, possession of a CDS under 50 grams, and possession of drug paraphernalia, Batelli said.
The juveniles, who police said were all from Mahwah, were released to their parents pending charges, Batelli said.
Police said they are continuing to investigate the incident.