Cops recover wheelchair stolen from teen with cerebral palsy, arrest suspect

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LEONIA, N.J. — Authorities have recovered a motorized wheelchair stolen from a teenager with cerebral palsy and arrested the man who allegedly took it.

Leonia police say 18-year-old Michael Peralta is charged with theft and unlawful taking of a means of conveyance. Bail was set at $25,000 cash for the Palisades Park, New Jersey, man, and it wasn’t known Saturday if he’s retained an attorney.

The wheelchair, valued at $12,000, belongs to a 14-year-old boy. It was stolen Thursday from a condominium complex in an incident captured on video that showed a man sitting in the chair and driving it away.

A Leonia police officer on routine patrol saw the wheelchair’s headrest Friday at Peralta’s home, two blocks from the border between the two towns. It was obstructed by bicycle and garbage cans.