PATERSON, NJ - Paterson police combined their technology and manpower to make an arrest and take a dangerous assault rifle off the streets on Thursday.

According to Paterson Police Director Jerry Speziale, Street Crime Unit detectives were about to start their tour at approximately 5:45 p.m. when they were alerted to shots fired in the area of 12th Street and East 23rd Street by the city’s Shotspotter gunfire detection system.

The report continues that Detective J. Jenkins immediately began reviewing city cameras in that area at which point he observed a male, later identified as Samuel Lesane, walk towards a parked vehicle on 12th Avenue.

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Once at the rear of the vehicle Lesane is said to have crouched down and picked up what appeared to be a rifle and moved it to a stairway at the front of the residence.

Detective Jenkins kept the suspect in view, and with the assistance of Detective Sergeant Rick LaTrecchia, relayed their observations to patrol units in the area.

While Officer T. Holmes of the Patrol Division responded to the residence and recovered the firearm, an AR-15 assault rifle, other units continued searching for the suspect.

Soon thereafter Officers G. Spallacci and S. Castillo of the Emergency Services Unit observed a male matching the description provided by Detectives, standing in front of a store on 12th Avenue, confirmed him as the suspect, and took him into custody.

Calling the effort “outstanding” Speziale said that the firearm will be submitted to the New Jersey State Police Ballistics Laboratory for further examination.

“The quick actions of the Street Crime Detectives, along with the coordinated efforts of multiple units, and the use of modern technology resulted in the removal of a dangerous firearm from our streets, and the arrest of the individual in possession of that weapon,” Speziale said.


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