SPARTA, NJ – Sgt Keith Hannam was checking on a vehicle at White Lake Park Soccer field on July 2 around 10:35 p.m., when he saw a man hiding in the back seat.  As Sgt Hannam approached the man in the car, two other men emerged from the nearby woods, also approaching the vehicle.  The two men ran away when they saw the police car.

When Ryan P Roche, 18 years-old, was taking his identification out of his backpack Sgt Hannam saw a plastic bag that was suspected of containing marijuana. Sgt Hannam also observed Roche to have several beers.  Further, Roche had a marijuana smoking pipe in plain view in the center console of the vehicle.

Roche, a resident of Augusta, claimed all of the items to be his and not those of the men who ran away.  Sgt Hannam turned the investigation over to Police Officer Tim Lynott.  PO Lynott arrested Roche and he was transported to the Sparta Police Department Headquarters for processing.

Sign Up for E-News

Roche was charged criminally with Possession of Under 50 Grams of Marijuana, Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, Possession of an Alcoholic Beverage Under the Legal Age.  He also received a motor vehicle summons for Possession of Controlled Dangerous Substance in a Motor Vehicle. 

He was released pending a court date.