Police: Man charged with DUI, heroin possession after crashing into Hoboken playground


A man was charged with drunk driving and heroin possession after crashing into a Hoboken playground Thursday afternoon, police said. 

Photo via Twitter.

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

Alessandro Mautone, 23, of Holmdel, was charged with two counts of assault by auto, possession of a controlled dangerous substance (heroin), driving under the influence of CDS, possession of CDS paraphernalia, driving under the influence, DUI in a school zone, being an unlicensed driver, failure to observe signal, possession of CDS in a motor vehicle and reckless driving, according to Police Det. Lt. Edgardo Cruz.

Thursday at approximately 4:49 p.m., officers responded to the area of 11th Street and Willow Avenue on a report of a motor vehicle accident. Officer Steven Albert, Sgt. Keith Rotondi and Sgt. David Olivera arrived to find several other agencies assisting a driver who was trapped inside his vehicle, authorities said.

The driver of a 2005 GMC struck a metal fence near the school playground after colliding with 2016 Honda on Willow Avenue. The GMC came to rest partially on the sidewalk while the rest hung over onto the playground area several feet off the ground, officials said.

The Hoboken Fire Department, along with Port Authority police and EMS, were able to remove the driver from the vehicle. Once removed from the vehicle, Rotondi was able to observe several wax folds of suspected heroin in the vehicle, police said.

These items were retrieved as evidence. The driver was then transported to the Jersey City Medical Center for treatment. The Hudson County Regional Fatal Collision Unit assisted in the investigation, authorities said.

Those injured in the accident were a 13-year-old boy and the driver of the Honda. They were both transported to Hoboken University Medical Center where they received treatment for their injuries.

It did not appear that either injured party suffered serious injuries and were expected to recover. The mother of the juvenile was contacted and advised of the incident, officials said.

Officer Luke Zeszotarski, a drug recognition expert, was advised by Olivera to perform several tests on the driver in order to determine whether he was under the influence of any narcotics, police said.

Zeszotarski performed several test and concluded that the driver was under the influence of a narcotic while driving. Once treated at the hospital, he was transported to headquarters where he was processed. A warrant complaint was generated and he was later remanded to the Hudson County Rehabilitation Facility, authorities said.

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