Hitchhikers attempt bribe
By Victor Mimoni, Queens Courier
An anti-crime cop in the 111th Precinct observed three hitchhikers near the corner of Springfield and Northern Boulevards in Bayside - who were "obstructing pedestrian and vehicular traffic."
When Police Officer Spyros Karellas stopped and confronted the trio at about 5:30pm on Tuesday, November 17, he said he "smelled the pungent aroma of marijuana coming from a backpack," allegedly belonging to Christopher Evans, 22, of Tipp City, Ohio. Evans was traveling with San Francisco resident James Kessler, 23 and Seth Ulrich, 17, of Spanaway, Washington.
Karellas detained them and found a bag containing "about 25 grams" of the controlled substance in Evans' backpack, and $18,510 in cash in his jacket pocket.
Cops said that a search of Ulrich's backpack yielded another bag with approximately 25 grams of pot and $15,000 in cash. Kessler's backpack allegedly yielded $13,960 in cash.
According to police, "Evans offered all the money [$47,470 in total] and the marijuana in exchange for not being arrested. The other two, hearing the bribe offer, did not object."
The trio was charged with two counts of bribery, both felonies, and misdemeanor possession.
The hitchhiking trio was jailed and arraigned before Judge Lenora Gerald on Thursday, November 19, who released them in their own recognizance. If convicted of the most serious bribery charge, they could go to state prison for seven years. They are due back in court December 3.