SPARTA, NJ – A man from Jersey City is facing drug charges after being stopped for having an expired registration.  On December 10, around 11:30 p.m. Sparta Police Officer Daniel Elig stopped James Atkins, Jr. on Route 15, police report.

When Elig spoke with the 53-year-old driver the officer smelled marijuana.  Sparta Sgt. Pensado and Cpl. Grauerolz came to provide backup.  Atkins told Elig he had smoked a joint while waiting to be relieved at work, police say. 

When asked by police, Atkins handed the officer a partially smoked marijuana cigarette and a tin that had a small amount of marijuana.  The officers searched the car and found another marijuana cigarette on the front passenger seat, police say.

Atkins was taken into custody and brought to the Sparta Police Department Headquarters for processing.  He was charged with expired registration, controlled dangerous substance in a motor vehicle, possession of under 50 grams of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia.  He was given a court date and released.