New Jersey

Pickup Truck Driver Crashes, Spilling Mulch, While Fleeing Police in New Jersey

A pickup truck driver pulling a landscape trailer crashed and sent mulch spilling across a roadway in New Jersey while trying to escape police Wednesday morning, ultimately crashing and rolling over, authorities say. 

Police in Brick first pulled over the driver for having an expired registration on Route 70, near Van Zile Road, authorities say; the driver, later identified as Joseph Willemain, gave a fake name to hide the fact that he had a warrant out for his arrest in Maryland.

As the police officer was running a check on Willemain, Willemain took off in the pickup, with a woman also in the car, police said. As he made a righthand turn, the trailer spilled mulch onto the roadway, and the police officer decided to stop the pursuit because of the suspect's dangerous and erratic driving.

The driver went on, but eventually lost control of the pickup, mounting the curb at Route 88 and rolling over onto a lawn, police said. Willemain climbed from the pickup and tried to run from police. 

The 28-year-old Willemain of Parkton, Maryland, and passenger 26-year-old Rachel Katz, of Brick, were both arrested. 

Willemain has been charged with eluding police, hindering arrest, resisting arrest, reckless driving, careless driving, speeding, unregistered vehicle, failure to exhibit a driver’s license, loading as to spill, and throwing or dropping debris from a motor vehicle. He was transported to Ocean County Jail.

Attorney information for him wasn't immediately available. 

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