Police: 2 charged minutes apart for unpaid tolls, DUI, at Lincoln Tunnel


Two men were arrested at the Lincoln Tunnel entrance in Weehawken within 20 minutes of one another for having $250 in unpaid tolls and driving under the influence, respectively, police said.

Photo courtesy of Port Authority police.
Photo courtesy of Port Authority police.

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

Alexander Velasquez, 42, of Hamburg, P.A., was charged with theft of Service and tampering with public records, according to Port Authority police spokesman Joe Pentangelo.

Yesterday at approximately 3:30 p.m., a Port Authority police officer was monitoring traffic on the New Jersey plaza of the Lincoln Tunnel in Weehawken and saw a 2013 blue Dodge Avenger dragging a cone stuck in its undercarriage navigating through the EZ Pass lane, officials said.

The officer pulled the vehicle over and noticed the rear plate of the Dodge had a white U.S. Post Office Priority sticker obscuring the plate, authorities said.

The officer interviewed the driver, and found that the driver did not have an EZ Pass. A computer check revealed that the driver in fact failed to pay the toll and had over $250 in unpaid tolls and the vehicle was also uninsured, police said.

Velasquez was placed under arrest without incident.

Lawrence Lunsford, 61, of Maplewood, was then charged with driving under the influence (marijuana), driving with a suspended license and various traffic violations just 20 minutes later, officials said.

At the same crossing, police observed a 2007 white Hino box truck near the Lincoln Tunnel traveling westbound on route 495, straddling two lanes for several hundred feet, authorities said.

Officers also noticed that the front plate was bent under the truck’s bumper, unable to be read and the rear license plate covered, police said.

After pulling the vehicle over and asking for the driver’s paperwork, police noticed a strong smell of burnt marijuana was about the car and the driver’s hands were fumbling and slow moving, dropping his paperwork, officials said.

The driver volunteered he had been smoking marijuana and he was placed under arrest, authorities said.

The truck, owned by Flame Cut Steel, Inc. was impounded and a computer check showed his license was suspended due to prior DUIs, police said.

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  1. Now this gives me a good idea… It’s been a long time since Mary Jane took a ride with me! “I take a toke, and all my cones go up in smoke”!!