NJ man wanted to get arrested for robbery so he could get drug treatment, cops say
NORTH PLAINFIELD — A Plainfield man arrested last week at a Route 22 bank in this borough told police he wanted to get hauled to jail so that he could get treatment for his drug addiction.
Troy Crane, 56, was charged with third-degree uttering a forged document and third-degree creating a false public alarm after he first tried to cash a forged check and then returned shortly thereafter to tell a bank employee that he “needed money” and he would “attempt to rob this place,” police said.
After the employee gave Crane the money, he quietly sat down in a chair and waited, police said. After a while, he reportedly asked the employee “How long will the cops take to get here?”
The arrest was announced Monday by the Somerset County Prosecutor's Office, which did not disclose Crane's supposed motive: He was seeking drug treatment.
That statement by Crane was mentioned by police in a criminal affidavit filed in Superior Court in Somerville, of which a copy was obtained and first reported by MyCentralJersey.com.
Police did not say what drug Crane may have been addicted to, but his arrest comes amid a growing heroin epidemic in the state. Last week, prosecutors in two counties told New Jersey 101.5 that overdose deaths have been skyrocketing this year despite increased awareness campaigns.
About 53 percent of inmates entering the state's correctional system have a history of drug and alcohol abuse. The state plans to open a 696-bed licensed drug treatment center at Mid-State Correctional Facility at Fort Dix next year.
The state's mandatory Drug Court system also sends nonviolent offenders to drug treatment instead of jail. Since 2002, 19,554 people have been sentenced through Drug Court, and 4,322 have successfully graduated the program.
Judge Robert Reed set Crane's bail at $15,000 with a 10 percent option.
It was not clear Tuesday whether Crane had an attorney.
Sergio Bichao is deputy digital editor at New Jersey 101.5. Send him news tips: Call 609-438-1015 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.