Western New Jersey

Route 22 traffic stop leads to arrest of wanted man

Clinton Township police catch Kenneth Cardona of Mount Pocono

CLINTON TWP., N.J. - A stop for traffic violations resulted in the arrest of a Pennsylvania fugitive by Clinton Township police early Sunday morning in Hunterdon County, N.J.

Shortly after midnight, Clinton Township Patrolman Sean Ross stopped a 2003 Mercedes Benz 230 that was going east on Route 22 near Potterstown Road.

Ross pulled the car over because the driver, 28-year-old Margaret Flores of Phillipsburg, had failed to change lanes when approaching an "engaged" emergency vehicle and because her car had a front view obstruction.

After he stopped the Mercedes, Ross detected the odor of marijuana and determined the passenger in the front seat recently had smoked marijuana and synthetic marijuana, also known as "spice."

The passenger, who repeatedly identified himself as Kenneth Cadona, was placed under arrest for being under the influence of a controlled dangerous substance.

A search of the car produced a container of crushed white powder, believed to be Xanax, and a .380 caliber Jiminez Arms handgun.  Police determined both belonged to the passenger, who was transported to police headquarters.

Police determined the man's real name was Kenneth Cardona, a 23-year-old resident of Mount Pocono in Pennsylvania's Monroe County.

When his identity was entered into the National Crime Information Center, police learned Cardona was a fugitive.

He was wanted by the Hudson County Sheriff's Department for violation of a drug court program.

Police also learned criminal warrants for his arrest had been issued by Jersey City and Lyndhurst. (Police did not specify the crimes that generated those warrants.)

Cardona was charged with unlawful possession of a handgun, certain persons not to possess a weapon, hindering apprehension, possession of a controlled dangerous substance, being under the influence of a controlled dangerous substance and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Cardona was incarcerated in the Hunterdon County Jail. Bail on the Clinton Township charges was set at $50,000.

The recovered handgun will be subjected to a ballistics examination.

Flore was issued motor vehicles summonses for failing to change plans upon approaching an engaged emergency vehicle and having an obstructed view.

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