FAIR LAWN, NJ - A 56-year-old Westfield man's stolen car was recovered and the thief arrested a week after it was taken from Crunch Fitness on Banta Place, police said.
On May 15 at 9 a.m., the vehicle owner reported his 2018 Ford F150 pickup truck was stolen from the gym's parking lot at 2-22 Banta Place. Upon leaving the gym, he noticed his keys were missing from his jacket, which had been in a locker, and subsequently realized his car was missing from the parking lot.
Detectives were able to secure a photo of the alleged thief from surveillance video at Crunch Fitness.
On May 22, just after midnight, six officers responded to Morlot Avenue at Canger Place on a report of a dispute between a New Jersey Transit bus driver and a male passenger. Police removed the passenger, David DeLaurentis, 30, of Paterson, from the bus, and then identified him as the actor from the stolen vehicle incident on May 15 and was arrested.
DeLaurentis stated that after taking the vehicle, he had changed the license plates but the vehicle had become disabled in Denville where it was towed away by Denville Police.
DeLaurentis, who had marijuana in a duffel bag he was carrying, was released after being charged with theft of movable property and possession of a controlled dangerous substance.
Chief Glen Cauwels stated all defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty.