Erratic driving call led Newtown police to pot, rifles, sword
NEWTOWN — A call for an erratic driver near the Newtown police station earlier this week led investigating officers to a driver under the influence in possession of marijuana, two rifles and a sword, police said Thursday.
Police quickly responded when a 911 caller on Monday reported a person driving erratically near the flagpole, just down the street from the station.
A concerned citizen called 911 on Monday night to report a driver in a black Ford pickup truck — later identified as John Petrocelli — driving “erratically” near the flagpole on Main Street, according to police. An officer from the department’s traffic unit responded to the area and soon spotted the pickup truck on South Main Street and stopped it.
The officer investigated the cause of the driver’s action. Police said once Petrocelli failed field sobriety tests, he was placed under arrest.
A search of Petrocelli’s vehicle led the officer to find marijuana, two rifles and a sword, police said. Petrocelli, 56, of Meriden, was charged with driving under the influence, criminal possession of a firearm, violation of a protective order, weapons in a motor vehicle, possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia.
“Police have not been able to determine why Petrocelli was driving in Newtown, other than (visiting) family members, though he might have been lost,” said Lt. Aaron Bahamonde. “During the officer's investigation Petrocelli was not very cooperative.”
Petrocelli was taken into custody and taken to Newtown police headquarters to be processed. He was held on a $10,000 bond.