ROXBURY, NJ - A motorist who crashed Wednesday in Kenvil while being followed by state troopers was charged with aggravated assault and other crimes, police said today
The driver, Michael Gill, 39, of Oxford, also faces charges of eluding police and assault by motor vehicle, according to State Police Trooper Alejandro Goez. Gill's passenger, Casey Giles, 38, of Bridgewater, was also arrested after police learned she was wanted on outstanding warrants out of Somerset County, Goez said.
Gill was driving westbound on Route 80 shortly after 1 p.m. when Roxbury police sought to pull him over for motor vehicle violations, police said. They said Gill somehow managed to evade the Roxbury pursuers when he exited onto Exit 27, near Netcong.
Roxbury police, at 1:17 p.m., broadcast a "be on the lookout" request alerting area police about the vehicle, said Goez. Shortly thereafter, troopers patrolling the area spotted the white Nissan Maxima sedan and followed it as Gill drove east on Route 46, he said.
A member of a state Department of Transportation (DOT) crew, who was working on Route 46 in the Kingtown Mountain section of Ledgewood, said he and his colleagues saw the pursuit taking place, noting the vehicles were moving "at a good clip."
Apparently, Gill then attempted to lose the troopers by pulling into the busy Morris Canal Plaza parking lot.
"OMG," wrote one witness in a Facebook post. "I saw it all start." She said she was in her car in the parking lot when the white Maxima pulled into the adjacent parking spot. She said a police car ,with its lights on, pulled behind the Maxima, at which point "the guy makes a go for it (and) speeds out of the parking lot."
The last leg of Gill's failed escapade ended a mile later on Route 46 in Kenvil, when he slammed into the front of a 6,000- to 7,000-pound Dodge Ram 2500 pickup after veering around a car waiting to turn left into Kenvil Automotive. None of the truck's passengers sustained injuries, and - although the impact did severe damage to the Maxima - Gill and Giles suffered only minor injuries, said Goez.
He said Giles "was found to have outstanding warrants and was wanted out of Somerset County." Giles was placed in Somerset County jail, said Goez. Gill - who also had outstanding warrants - was placed in the Morris County jail, said the trooper.