Fort Lee Police Arrest Man for Impersonating a Police Officer, Weapons Offenses
Officials from the Fort Lee Police Department recently arrested a man who is now facing charges including: impersonating a police officer, exhibiting false government documents, and illegal possession of a handgun, after he was stopped while driving on the shoulder of the George Washington Bridge.
According to Fort Lee Police Captain Stanley Zon, 44-year-old Burlington County resident George Santos was pulled over at approximately 7:45 p.m. on Saturday, June 21st, when a detective with the department allegedly witnessed him driving along the shoulder of the GWB in order to avoid a long line of traffic.
Per the report from Detective Philip Ross, Mr. Santos claimed to be a New York City police officer, showcasing a police shield and an expired identification card. Ross became suspicious when Santos could not provide an explanation as to why he did not have an up-to-date card nor correctly answer questions regarding the NYPD. The detective then requested additional assistance and received Santos’s permission to a search his vehicle. During the search, officers reportedly discovered a loaded handgun, a high-capacity magazine, handcuffs, and false government documents.
Officers then arrested Santos, charging him with impersonating a police officer, illegal possession of a handgun, multiple unlawful possession of other weapons offenses, and exhibiting false government documents. Santos also received summonses for motor vehicle violations. He was released after posting bail in the amount of $7,500.
The charges against the defendant are very serious and a conviction could spell significant consequences, including a prison sentence and a period of driver’s license suspension. For example, illegal possession of a handgun offenses, governed under N.J.S.A. 2C:39-5(b), can be considered second or third degree crimes, depending on the type of handgun allegedly involved with the offense. In addition, charges for exhibiting false government documents, which are codified in N.J.S.A. 2C:21-2.1(c), are classified as third degree crimes and entail a 6-month to 2-year driver’s license suspension. Second degree crimes are punishable by a term of incarceration ranging from 5 to 10 years in New Jersey State Prison, while third degree convictions are punishable by between 3 and 5 years of imprisonment.
For more information pertaining to this case, access the following article: Fort Lee police say cop impersonator passing GWB traffic on shoulder had loaded gun, ammo, cuffs, ID