YOU READ IT HERE FIRST: A limo driver pointed police to a convicted armed robber who grabbed two bags of luggage off a carousel at Newark Airport this morning and then sat with them outside the terminal in a car whose driver never returned, Port Authority police told CLIFFVIEW PILOT .
Victor Spears (PORT AUTHORITY booking photo; INSET: NJDOC mugshot)
The limo driver approached Sgt. Reynaldo Mendez’s around 1:30 this morning.
“Something is not right,” the driver said, pointing to a man sitting in a gold 2004 Toyota just outside the terminal who he said had just walked off with two “elite”-tagged bags.
Mendez called for backup, and Officers Sabino Petruczelli and Antonio Valentin approached the man, asking him what he was doing there and where the driver was.
After spotting the bags in the back, the officers again asked him the same questions.
His answers were shaky, Port Authority Police spokesman Al Della Fave told CLIFFVIEW PILOT .
Petruczelli and Valentin asked him for identification but he couldn’t produce any.
“Obviously, he wasn’t flying today,” Della Fave said.
What the officers didn’t know was that 39-year-old Victor Spears of Irvington has spent more than half of the past 12 years behind bars for a host of convictions, including robbery, weapons possession, aggravated assaul and resisting arrest according to state criminal records.
He was also wanted on a civil contempt warrant out of Cumberland County, records show.
Spears consented to a search of the car, and the officers immediately verified the bags as missing, Della Fave told CLIFFVIEW PILOT .
They arrested Spears on two counts of theft and impounded the Toyota. When its owner returns for the vehicle “he’ll have to answer some questions,” Della Fave said.
Spears was behind held Friday on $50,000 bail at the Essex County Jail.
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