Gas station attendant beaten, police chase after suspects in New Jersey

ByEyewitness News WABC logo
Wednesday, January 20, 2021
Gas station attendant attacked in NJ, police chase after suspects
Police arrested the two men in Little Falls and say they were driving while intoxicated.

FAIRFIELD, New Jersey (WABC) -- New video shows a random attack at a gas station in New Jersey.

It happened Sunday at 6:26 a.m. at a Quick Check convenience store at Passaic Avenue and Little Falls Road in Fairfield.

Police say the attacker, Christopher Sanchez, 35, kicked a car and yelled at the driver.

The video shows him throw the 67-year-old attendant to the ground and run away.

As police tended to the victim, witnesses at the scene spotted the suspects' vehicle driving past and pointed it out to officers.

After a brief chase, police pulled the driver, Antonio Lopis, 34, over and took him into custody in Little Falls.

They also arrested his passenger, Sanchez.

Police say both suspects were drunk and resisted arrest. A small amount of marijuana was also found in the vehicle, according to officers.

While seated in the rear of the police car, Sanchez is accused of manipulating his handcuffs from behind his back to his front and attempting to destroy the in-car camera.

Once at the headquarters, police say Sanchez attempted to push past the officers in an attempt to flee from the cell. He was restrained but allegedly assaulted two officers.

"From what we can tell, the Jeep and its occupants never went into the convenience store nor did they attempt to get gasoline nor did any of them have any contact with the victims prior to the assault on the attendant or the act of criminal mischief in kicking the car. Instead, Sanchez' actions in the parking lot appear to be a total random act of violence and aggression towards two completely innocent people" said Chief Anthony G. Manna.

Lopis was charged with eluding police, possession of less than 50 grams of marijuana, driving under the influence, refusal to submit to a breath test and eleven motor vehicle violations.

Sanchez was charged with aggravated assault, two counts of aggravated assault on a police officer, attempted escape, disorderly conduct, two counts of criminal mischief, obstruction of justice and deliberately destroying a camera in a police vehicle.

Both individuals were remanded to the Essex County Correctional Facility pending a bail review by the Superior Court in Newark, N.J.

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