Weapon found, owner charged as detectives attacked club after Paterson Street gang’s hours of operation

Pot smoke was thick as Paterson’s detectives attempted to disperse a crowd of around 75 revelers – mostly gang members – who had gathered in a space above a downtown business in a neighborhood with high crime. Then investigators found a gun.

A man who identified himself as the owner stepped forward and was taken into custody as reinforcements arrived and dispersed the illegal gathering, the city’s public safety director Jerry Speziale said.

Detectives roamed the 5th Ward hotspot on Market Street in an attempt to “disrupt gang and narcotics activity as well as prevent violent crimes such as homicides and non-fatal shootings,” Speziale said.

“Individuals in this area are known to carry firearms and distribute large quantities of drugs,” he added.

It was shortly before 2 a.m. on Friday when detectives from the Narcotics Division / Vice Division heard loud music coming from the second floor of 320 Market Street, Speziale said.

Seeing the undercover investigators, the doorman “immediately turned and ran upstairs,” the manager said.

Detectives followed him up the stairs to an area filled with pot and cigarette smoke, Speziale said, noting that the space “functions as a commercial establishment rented out for parties and events.”

Detectives quickly recognized several members of the “4K Boys” gang, many of whom, according to Speziale, “have become uncooperative.”

They then found a loaded and disfigured 9mm handgun under a table directly in front of the DJ, he said. It had been reported stolen out of Georgia.

A man identified as the owner, Jesse Seegers, 41, of Paterson, told investigators he closed the party, the manager said, but people refused to leave. Reinforcements were called in, the crowd dispersed and Seegers was arrested, he said.

The police charged him with:

  • maintenance of a nuisance – namely: “a condition which endangers the health and safety of a considerable number of persons” because of the firearm and smoking indoors;
  • allow the consumption of alcohol other than beer and wine without a license (“strong alcohol was spread throughout the establishment,” Speziale said);
  • Smoking in a closed public gathering;
  • Stay open after midnight;
  • Not have an entertainment license;
  • Not have a dancing license.
  • Loud music.

Seegers received a subpoena and was released.

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