Retiree who portrays Santa Claus now facing drug charges

Posted at 9:58 AM, Nov 07, 2017
and last updated 2017-11-07 09:58:27-05

SOUTH HACKENSACK, N.J. (AP) — A retiree who volunteers as a Santa Claus is facing drug charges alleging police found a crack pipe in his vehicle during a New Jersey traffic stop.

South Hackensack police say 66-year-old Charles Smith, of Pompton Lakes, was arrested Monday after a traffic stop on Route 46. They say an officer saw the crack pipe next to a Santa Claus costume.

Authorities say a subsequent search of the vehicle turned up more drug paraphernalia, including empty bags of crack and heroin alongside a hypodermic needle.

Multiple phones listed for Smith have been disconnected so he can't be reached for comment. It's unknown if Smith has an attorney who could comment for him.