SPARTA TOWNSHIP, NJ (Sussex County) – A Sussex County man is facing drug charges after heroin and hypodermic needles were allegedly found in his shoe.
At 1:00 p.m. on Tuesday, a township officer observed a 1998 Nissan speeding on Route 15 north with four occupants and also observed an expired inspection sticker as the vehicle passed the officer’s location, Sgt. Dennis Proctor said.
After stopping the vehicle near the 11 mile marker, the officer approached the driver, identified as Michael J. Radino, 28, from Sussex and advised him of the reason for the stop, Proctor said.
The officer immediately observed assorted items of drug paraphernalia in the vehicle. The officer then spoke with one of the back seat passengers, identified as Michael J. Bergbreiter-Piazza from Hopatcong since he appeared to be under the influence of a narcotic, Proctor said.
While speaking with him outside of the vehicle, the officer observed drug paraphernalia fall out of his pant leg or shoe, Proctor said.
Further investigation revealed that Bergbreiter-Piazza was carrying 72 wax folds containing heroin and two hypodermic needles in his shoe. The other individuals in the vehicle claimed no knowledge of drugs or paraphernalia in the vehicle, Proctor said.
A K-9 from the Sussex County Sheriff’s Office was called to the scene and no further contraband was detected in the vehicle, Proctor said.
Bergbreiter-Piazza was charged with possession of heroin, possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of hypodermic syringes. He was released after processing pending a court date.
Radino was charged with speeding, maintenance of lamps, expired rejected inspection sticker and failure to produce a driver’s license. He left the scene after the motor vehicle stop.
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(Photo Courtesy: Sparta Township Police Department)