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Sanitation Worker High on Heroin Crashes Car Into Pole, Source Says

By Nicholas Rizzi | August 10, 2016 4:45pm

GRASMERE — An off-duty Sanitation Department worker crashed his car into a pole while high on heroin and had to have an anti-overdose medicine administered, a law enforcement source said.

He's the third person on Staten Island to be given the drug after wrecking his car while high in two weeks.

Vincent Gaeta, 45, was driving his 2016 Kia SUV when he crashed into a concrete pole at the corner of Sable and Mosel avenues on Monday at about 7:54 p.m., prosecutors said.

Officers found Gaeta in the car high on heroin while the engine was smoking. He had slurred speech, a pale face and soiled clothing, prosecutors said.

EMS workers gave him the anti-overdose medication Narcan and officers found a spoon and a hypodermic needle with heroin residue on the driver's side floor of his car, prosecutors said. Officers also found a bag of marijuana in the vehicle.

The incident is the third in two weeks when a driver crashed while high on heroin and had to be given the drug, which is also called by its generic name, naloxone.

On Aug. 5, Michael Marquez was arrested after he crashed his girlfriend's car into a telephone pole in Great Kills and several hours later, James Boylan was arrested after he rear-ended a police car in New Dorp.

Gaeta was charged with operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol or drugs, criminal possession of a controlled substance, criminally possessing a hypodermic instrument and unlawful possession of marijuana at his Tuesday arraignment, according to the Staten Island District Attorney's office.

His bail was set at $1,000 and he's due back in court on Aug. 12, according to online court records.

Gaeta's lawyer and the Department of Sanitation did not immediately respond to requests for comment.