A Queens man caught with marijuana when he was pulled over asked the officers arresting him to check on his 8-year-old son at home, leading them directly to evidence of an alleged marijuana operation in his apartment, police say.
Officers pulled over 30-year-old Nuquan Stewart in Queens Village at about 10:45 p.m. last Tuesday when they noticed a brake light was out on his 2004 Volkswagen, according to police.
They noticed a strong smell of marijuana during the traffic stop, and asked Stewart to step out of the car.
That's when the officers spotted six plastic bags of the drug sticking out of the pocket of his hoodie, and a gravity knife in the cupholder of the center console, police said.
As officers arrested Stewart, he asked them to make sure his son, who was alone at home, was OK, according to police. He gave them his home address and apartment keys.
The officers went to Stewart's apartment about a half-mile away on 222nd Street and smelled marijuana as they entered the building's first-floor hallway, according to police. Inside the apartment, officers saw bags of marijuana in plain view in the kitchen and living room, along with stacks of cash, police said.
Stewart's son was found sleeping in his bedroom. He was transferred into the care of the city's Administration for Children's Services and then to another family member, according to police.
A search warrant was executed the next morning, and police seized 30 pounds of marijuana in 58 bags, about $17,500 in cash, and several loaded guns and assault rifles, police said.
Stewart was charged with drug and weapons crimes, and for failure to exercise control of a minor. He has multiple prior arrests, police said.
He remains on Rikers Island awaiting his next court date on Wednesday, Oct. 29. Bail was set at $25,000.
Attorney information was not immediately available.