A pair of detectives observed two men with their hands in the area on 12th Avenue early Saturday morning, according to public safety director Jerry Speziale.
Police observed a third man standing in front of them in the area of 200 12th Avenue at around 1 a.m. Detectives approached and saw the third man had pointed a large firearm at the two men with their hands in the air.
Detectives attempted to arrest the third man, Nicholas Williams, 25, of Paterson, but he tried to walk away. Williams hid behind a vehicle and discarded a weapon, police said.
Williams was forced to the ground and a .45 caliber semi-automatic handgun was seized. Police said the two apparent robbery victims walked away from the scene as detectives dealt with the armed suspect.
Police searched for the two victims but could not located them in the area.
Williams was processed at police headquarters and is being held at the Passaic County Jail pending a court appearance.
Police said the weapon recovered will be submitted to the New Jersey State Police Ballistics Laboratory for analysis to determine if it was used in other crimes.
Detectives Rene Alicea and Joseph Aboyoun were responsible for the successful arrest. Speziale praised both detectives for their work.