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Alert officer, teamwork net serial burglar in Rutherford

Photo Credit: Courtesy RUTHERFORD PD

ONLY ON CVP: A 22-year-old convicted burglar was back behind bars, charged with several commercial break-ins – including the same Blimpie’s twice in three days – thanks to cooperation between Rutherford and East Rutherford police.

East Rutherford Police Officer Jeff Perry was off duty Wednesday afternoon when he spotted Tyler Lusardi-Paz near the Rutherford train station, Rutherford Police Chief John Russo told CLIFFVIEW PILOT .

Perry recognized Paz, who was wanted for questioning in connection with commercial burglaries in town and in East Rutherford. The Bergen County Sheriff’s Office also had a warrant for his arrest, Russo said.

Paz also had been connected to more than two dozen commercial burglaries in 2012.

As backup East Rutherford Officer Brian Montague radioed Rutherford police, Paz bolted, the chief said, . The officers quickly chased him down and brought him to headquarters, where they were met by Rutherford Detective Sgt. Michael Garner.

Paz was carrying empty packets of heroin, hypodermic syringes and a flare gun – all of which brought charges, in addition to resisting arrest, Russo said.
Pooling their intelligence, detectives then charged Paz with several burglaries:

  • Last Sunday, they said, he forced open a rear door at the Blimpie’s on Park Avenue in Rutherford and made off with a cash box;
  • Two days later, police said, Paz broke into the sub shop again, taking money from the cash register after damaging a safe;
  • That same morning, they said, he removed money from the cash register at a Park Avenue nail salon in Rutherford after prying open a rear door.
  • East Rutherford police charged him with breaking into a Park Avenue salon in their town in July 2012 and a bakery and dog grooming salon, also on Park Avenue, on Monday.

Paz was being held on $150,000 bail in the Bergen County Jail.

In addition to the arrest-related offenses, he’s charged with a total of five burglary counts, five theft counts, three counts of possessing burglary tools and three counts of criminal mischief.

Russo commended the officers involved.

Perry’s “dedication to duty resulted in the apprehension of a serial commercial burglar plaguing multiple jurisdictions,” the chief told CLIFFVIEW PILOT .

“I also want to thank Officer Brian Montague and the entire East Rutherford Police Department for their assistance in helping solve these burglaries,” he said. “Detective Sergeant Michael Garner and the Rutherford Criminal Investigation Division also worked tirelessly in developing leads.

“This is a shining example of multi-jurisdictional information-sharing, cooperation and coordination which greatly benefits southern Bergen County on a daily basis.”


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