BAYONNE and JERSEY CITY, - A 29-year-old Jersey City man led Bayonne police on a high speed chase through parts of both cities Wednesday, eventually leading to his arrest and the recovery of nearly $6,000 in U.S. currency.

According to Capt. Eric Amato, the incident began when members of the Bayonne Police Department observed a black Dodge Durango, later determined to be owned and operated by Rashaad A. Smith, double park on the corner of 53rd Street and Avenue B. A check of the vehicle led to the discovery that Smith had a suspended driver’s license. 

As he returned to his vehicle, police say, Smith appeared to conceal an item in his waistband before fleeing at a high rate of speed. Officers attempted to conduct a motor vehicle stop in the area of 58th Street and Kennedy Boulevard but as soon as they activated their emergency lights and sirens Smith is said to have accelerated and initiated a motor vehicle pursuit. 

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The pursuit continued with Smith operating his vehicle at high speeds and in a reckless manner while allegedly disregarding numerous red lights and causing danger to other motorists. The pursuit continued into Jersey City where officers observed Smith discard narcotics out of the driver side window. Smith then crashed into a vehicle stopped at the red light at Neptune Avenue and Kennedy Boulevard and continued fleeing in his vehicle. The struck vehicle also left the scene and did not report the crash or any injuries. As the pursuit continued onto Linden Avenue, officers again observed Smith discarding a large plastic bag out of the driver side window. 

Sensing the pursuit too dangerous to continue, police terminated the pursuit but were able to observe Smith exit his moving vehicle and flee on foot on Brown Street. The vehicle eventually came to rest after it struck an unoccupied parked BMW on Brown Street. 

Officers immediately gave chase on foot with Smith refusing to comply and attempt to enter his residence on Brown Street. While attempting to enter his residence, officers said they observed him discard a plastic ziplock bag over the fence in the alleyway. Officers were able to close the distance in the alleyway and order Smith to the ground, arresting him before he gained entry. 

As officers recovered the plastic bag from the alleyway, they discovered it contained $5,822 in various denominations, a manner consistent with the sale of narcotics. As officers retraced the pursuit, they recovered the bag Smith was observed discarding in the area of Linden Street. The bag, the report states, contained 64 grams of marijuana. 

Smith was charged with a litany of crimes including Eluding Police, Resisting Arrest, Possession of and Intent to Distribute Marijuana, and False Government Documents. He was also processed on an open warrant for his arrest issued out of Newark.

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