Real Life Somerville Police Stories

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Elderd Arrest

Members of the Somerville Police Department Drug Control Unit have been conducting an ongoing narcotic investigation of the above named defendants Bruce Perez Jr. and Donna Elderd and their alleged role in the sale / distribution of Heroin. This investigation was launched upon cultivating intelligence from a reliable confidential source regarding illegal drug activity allegedly engaged in by the defendants in this matter.

At the culmination of the forenamed drug investigation a search warrant application was filed on August 22, 2014 before the Somerville District Court seeking authorization to search the person of Bruce Perez Jr. and the residence jointly occupied by defendants Perez and Elderd located at Winslow Avenue Somerville, MA for items of evidentiary value as it relates to this criminal investigation. The search warrant application was subsequently reviewed and approved by the Somerville District Court authorizing said request.

During the mid-morning of August 22, 2014 members of the Somerville Police Department Drug Control Unit assisted by the Somerville Police Department Gang / Anti-Crime Unit established a surveillance of the residence in question and adjacent area. At approximately 3:45PM observations were made of defendant Perez exiting from the residence located at Winslow Avenue Somerville, MA. Surveillance was maintained of defendant Perez as he travelled to three separate locations in Boston / Charlestown, MA. On his return journey to the target residence defendant Perez utilized the assistance of public transportation.

While travelling back to the direction of the Somerville residence it was learned via a radio transmission ( Inspector Kevin Shackelford ) that defendant Elderd was observed at approximately 5:25PM exiting from the residence located at Winslow Avenue Somerville, MA. Surveillance was maintained of defendant Elderd as she walked to a public pedestrian / bicycle pathway at which time she was observed meeting with two individuals. During the brief meeting involving defendant Elderd and the two individuals ( one male/ one female) Inspector Shackelford observed a hand exchange engaged in by defendant Elderd and the female. At the completion of the hand exchange defendant Elderd and the second female were approached by Inspectors Shackelford and James McNally at which time police identification was made. In response to the police identification Inspectors Shackelford and McNally observed the second female discard from her left hand a small object to the pavement beneath her. Further inspection of the object in question revealed a clear glassine bag containing a brown powder substance believed to be Heroin. Based on the observations made defendant Elderd was placed under arrest for the offense of Manufacture / Distribution of a Class “A” substance to wit Heroin. Once placed into custody defendant Elderd spontaneously uttered ” I know why I am being placed under arrest “. Subsequent to defendant Elderd arrest Inspector Ariel Collazo observed what appeared to be U.S. currency haphazardly protruding from defendant Elderd left front pants pocket.

At a later point in time this investigator conversed with defendant Elderd regarding her knowledge and involvement regarding the criminal investigation. Prior to the conversation I referenced her previous instruction pursuant to Miranda. Elderd admitted that there was a further quantity of Heroin stored within the bedroom that she occupied with her boyfriend defendant Bruce Perez. Additionally she described the area from within the bedroom and the amount of Heroin that was stored in this location. Defendant Elderd stated that in the past she has conducted approximately 5-10 Heroin transactions on the behalf of her boyfriend Bruce Perez. Elderd stated that she personally does not ingest illegal drugs. Elderd admitted to earlier selling the Heroin to the second female for a purchase price of $ 40.00 after receiving a telephone order. Elderd also acknowledged being present inside of the bedroom area in question while her boyfriend Bruce Perez was weighing and packaging Heroin for sale and distribution.

Upon exiting from public transportation defendant Perez was stopped at the intersection of College Avenue and Winslow Avenue. The stop of defendant Perez was simultaneous to the stop of defendant Donna Elderd. At this time police verbal police identification was made and a police department badge was displayed to him. Defendant Perez was advised as to the reason for the stop and the existence of the search warrants authorizing a search of the residence located at Winslow Avenue Somerville, MA. In addition defendant Perez was advised by this investigator of his Miranda warnings which he acknowledged receiving and understanding. Post -Miranda Perez was receptive to inquiries regarding his knowledge and involvement in this matter. Defendant Perez stated that he occupies a third floor bedroom of the residence located at Winslow Avenue Somerville, MA. with his girlfriend Donna Elderd. Perez admitted that there was an amount of Heroin currently stored within the third floor bedroom explaining that it was positioned inside a safe. Perez claimed to be an opiate abuser and described the approximate quantity of Heroin stored within the bedroom area.

When questioned further regarding his Heroin distribution operation Perez elaborated regarding the details. Perez stated that he typically obtains one or two fingers of Heroin ( 10 or 20 grams of Heroin ) at which time he weighs and packages the Heroin for re-distribution. Perez stated that he typically sells the Heroin for $ 40.00 per bag of Heroin and that the amount of Heroin per bag is .3 to .4 grams of Heroin. Perez said that his digital scale was inoperable which necessitated him to visually weigh the bags of Heroin. Defendant Perez identified his Heroin source of supply explaining that he ( Perez ) works for the Heroin distributor and obtains the Heroin for $ 600.00 – $ 650.00 per finger of Heroin. Responding to an inquiry of how many bags of Heroin he ( Perez ) recently weighed and packaged for re-distribution Perez stated 15 bags of Heroin.

I would note that both defendants Perez and Elderd were allowed to visually inspect the search warrants authorizing the search. Additionally a copy of the search warrants were provided to them. The defendants were transported to the Somerville Police Department Headquarters for booking and processing.

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