Stolen Flatbed Truck Driver Was Drunk During Chase, Police Say

By Sara Jerde | NJ Advance Media for

The 50-year-old man who fled from police across state lines on Monday in a stolen flatbed tow truck was allegedly drunk, police said.

Paul T. Gudanowski, who most recently was staying at a homeless shelter in Hackensack, was charged with driving while intoxicated by New York State Police.

Officers first tried to stop him in East Rutherford, where they responded to a report of a stolen flatbed truck out of Hackensack. He fled and eventually crossed into New York, where a police car from East Rutherford became hooked onto the end of the truck and was dragged.

Gudanowski also hit two New York State Police cars and two state police officers were treated and released from St. Luke's Hospital after sustaining minor injuries.

Other charges against Gudanowski in New York include criminal mischief, assault and resisting arrest. Gudanowski has a history of criminal charges in New York and New Jersey, said East Rutherford Lt. Thomas Berlinski.

So far in New Jersey, Gudanowski has been charged with two counts of aggravated assault, possessing stolen property, eluding and motor vehicle violations. He will go in front of New York courts before he is brought to New Jersey, Berlinski said.

Gudanowski is currently held at the Orange County jail in New York in lieu of a $50,000 cash bail or $150,000 bond. He is scheduled to reappear on Friday.

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