March 24, 2013 at 11:47 PM
It is always important to remember when you are operating a motor vehicle to be observant to your surroundings and more importantly to be wary of the actions of your passengers especially if they are inclined to carry narcotics with them. Such were the lessons learned this past Wednesday for a Lake Hopatcong couple.
At 3:15 pm, a 20-year-old woman was operating her silver Honda Civic north on the Sparta Junction. She was stopped at a red traffic signal with 21-year-old Christopher Beyel seated in the front passenger seat. A marked Sparta Police Car operated by Officer Craig J. Grauerholz was stopped next to them waiting to turn right onto Rte. 15.
As the officer happened to look to his left at the Honda, he watched in amazement as Beyel was rolling marijuana into a cigar. The couple was engaged in conversation as Beyel carefully rolled his blunt oblivious to the officer’s presence. A short time later the operator of the Honda and the officer made eye contact and she quickly nudged her passenger. He then put the cigar down. The light turned green and the vehicle was subsequently stopped.
When asked by the officer, Beyel denied any knowledge of the cigar or possession of any illegal substance. Subsequent investigation, resulted in the seizure of; One small ziplock bag containing 50 grams or less of marijuana, one empty ziplock bag with marijuana residue contained within, one package of “ZIG-ZAG WRAPS”, a metallic grinder with marijuana residue inside and one cigar with marijuana contained within. This item was found stuffed between the console and the front passenger’s seat.
Beyel was placed under arrest and transported to police headquarters for processing. He was charged with; Possession of Marijuana and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. He was released several hours later on his own recognizance. The female operator’s name is not being released because she was not charged in this incident. Ogdensburg Police Officer Christopher Geene assisted with this investigation.
Editor's Note: These criminal charges are mere accusations. Each defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.