SPARTA, NJ – A Newton man is facing DWI and drug charges after being stopped for erratic driving.  On May 11 Sparta police received a call from an off-duty officer from another town, reporting he was following a 1999 Lexus SUV that could not stay in the lane.  Further, the officer reported the driver had fallen asleep behind the wheel at a traffic light in Jefferson and hit the curb when exiting Route 15 at Sparta Junction.

Around 5 p.m. Sparta Police officer Erick Finley stopped 25-year-old David Jaekel.  When Finley spoke with the Newton resident the officer suspected he was under the influence of a drug.  Finley had Jaekel perform field sobriety tests and then took him into custody.

Jaekel was transported to Sparta Township Police Department headquarters for processing.  A Drug Recognition Expert also evaluated Jaekel and determined he was under the influence of a narcotic. 

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Jaekel was charged with being under the influence of a controlled dangerous substance, possession of drug paraphernalia.  He was also ticked for DWI, careless driving, throwing debris from a motor vehicle. 

Jaekel was released several hours later to a sober adult pending a court date.

Sparta Police Cpl. Craig Grauerholz, Cpl. Dan Elig and Det. Samantha Schilling from the Sussex County Sheriff’s Office assisted in the investigation.