New York

Anti-Drug Crusader in Holland Tunnel Gun Bust to Plead Guilty to Weapons Charge

A Pennsylvania man arrested last year at the Holland Tunnel with a vehicle full of weapons for an alleged drug rescue plans to plead guilty. 

A person with direct knowledge of the case told The Associated Press on Friday that John Cramsey will plead guilty on Monday. The person wasn't authorized to speak publicly because details of the plea agreement were still being worked out.

Cramsey, a gun range owner from East Greenville, Pennsylvania, and two other people were arrested outside the Holland Tunnel in Jersey City, New Jersey, in June 2016. They told authorities they were on their way to rescue a teenager from a drug den.

Cramsey's daughter had died from a drug overdose that year, and friends said her death spurred him to action. He posted online shortly before his arrest that he was heading to New York to "rescue" a girl whose friend had overdosed.

Police recovered weapons including a semi-automatic military-style rifle, a shotgun and five handguns, along with other tactical gear.

Dean Smith, of Whitehall, Pennsylvania, and Kimberly Arendt, of Lehighton, Pennsylvania, made deals with prosecutors earlier this year to avoid a trial. All three were charged with multiple weapons offenses.

Smith was driving Cramsey's neon-painted truck when the group was stopped. According to police, the vehicle was pulled over because it had a crack in its windshield and had some objects hanging from a rearview mirror.

The defendants contended they were actually stopped because of the truck's Second Amendment-themed decorations, and they sought unsuccessfully in court to have the search invalidated.

New Jersey has more stringent gun laws than Pennsylvania. It doesn't recognize carry permits from other states, and guns in cars must be kept locked and unloaded in a trunk or secure container.

A spokesman for the Hudson County prosecutor's office didn't immediately return a message seeking comment after hours Friday.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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