TRIO CHARGED IN FAUX-COP ROBBERY

Three men, including one from Middletown, are facing allegations they robbed a man on a Red Bank street when one of them posed as a cop, Red Bank police announced Sunday.

From department spokesman Captain Darren McConnell:

On Saturday, April 28 at approximately 7pm a male subject reported to the Red Bank Police Department that his wallet had been stolen from him by three subjects in a red sport utility vehicle. The victim stated that he had been walking in the area of Monmouth Street and Pearl Street when he was approached by the vehicle and one of the occupants displayed a badge identifying himself as a police officer. The victim was then told to turn over his wallet and when he did the subjects drove off.

Sgt. Errico Vescio was on patrol minutes later when he observed a vehicle and suspects matching the description. Sgt. Vescio stopped the vehicle on Newman Springs Road and ultimately took all three occupants into custody.

William Paine, 34, of Brick; Richard Ryan, 28, of Brick; and James Lapinski, 29, of Middletown were each charged with Robbery, Unlawful Possession of a Weapon, a police baton; and Impersonating a Police Officer. Bail was set at $105,000 for each subject and they were transported to the Monmouth County Correctional Institution.

Det. Juan Sardo and Sgt. Michael Frazee are conducting a follow up investigation to determine if these individuals committed any similar acts in the Borough or any other jurisdictions.