Man selling cheesecakes in Shamokin jailed on outstanding warrants
SHAMOKIN - A Northampton County man hocking cheesecakes door-to-door in the city Friday is now in county jail awaiting extradition to New Jersey on an outstanding warrant.
The incident was enough to move Shamokin Police Chief Edward Griffiths to ask city council on Monday to review its "peddlers permits" to perhaps disallow door-to-door sales by out-of-area firms.
Mendoza was among a group of five men working the 400 block of North Rock Street after 4 p.m. when a resident grew suspicious of their intentions and called police.
The men did have a permit to conduct the sale, Griffiths said.
Officers responded and checked the men's identification, subsequently learning that two of them, Mendoza and Larry Piers, had outstanding warrants.
Both were handcuffed and taken to the city police station.
Piers' active warrant from Massachusetts was non-extraditable and he was released. Mendoza wasn't so lucky as law enforcement in New Jersey sought his apprehension.
According to an affidavit of probable cause, Mendoza was using four aliases, one of which, Domingo Rodriguez, was listed on his warrant. He's also accused by police of using a pair of birth dates and a trio of Social Security numbers.
Police say his identity was confirmed using Live Scan fingerprinting computer software at the Stonington station of Pennsylvania State Police.
Mendoza, 46, of Freemansburg, is charged by Patrolman Raymond Siko II with a misdemeanor charge of flight to avoid apprehension. He remains at Northumberland County Prison awaiting extradition.
Police did not know the nature of Mendoza's warrant from New Jersey.
Griffiths told city council during its monthly meeting Monday that the men were working for a Lancaster firm.
His concern is that people with criminal intentions could prey on area residents who are either elderly or disabled.
The police chief requested that city ordinance be changed to cut back on door-to-door sales. As an alternative, he said permits could be tailored to allow vendors to set up at a single location that could be controlled and monitored, if need be.
Solicitor H. Robert Mattis said there are federal laws that restrict a total ban on door-to-door sales. If the city were to take action, he said it would be required to balance safety concerns with federal law.
The matter was tabled for further discussion at a future city council workshop.