Real Life Somerville Police Stories


Freitas Arrest

On the above date and time, while assigned to the Somerville Police PD
Narcotics/Vice Unit, working in an undercover capacity, operating an unmarked Police M/V, I initiated an active, street level, narcotics investigation, focusing on the illegal sale/distribution of controlled substances, specifically, Class “B” (Crack Cocaine), in the area of Assembly Row between Grand Union Blvd and Artisan Way. The focal point of this investigation centered on 2 W/M’s. One male was later to be identified as defendant James M. Freitas Jr. The second male was unidentified due to his leaving the scene of the transaction.

I was patrolling the area of Assembly Row when I observed the defendant walking along Grand Union Blvd. What caught my attention was the fact that the defendant was unsteady on his feet as he was walking along the sidewalk. He stumbled several times and nearly fell into the building as he was walking. At one point, he stumbled and nearly fell over when he approached the edge of the sidewalk. While walking, he was “working” his cell phone with his right hand and holding a Dunkin Donuts cup with his left hand. I took note that he was somewhat disheveled in his clothing and not clean shaven. He was wearing a gray, North Face hoodie, with a red logo. The hood was up and over his head. I was double parked along Grand Union Blvd as I was observing the defendant. He crossed over Artisan Way and headed toward Great River Rd. He was working the cell phone again. As he approached the area of Legal on the Mystic, I observed an employee come out of the establishment side door. The defendant stopped @ 10-15 away from the door, along the building mural side.

The defendant and the wait staff member met and exchanged a brief verbal interaction. At this point, I observed the defendant and the wait staff member perform a hand to hand exchange. This is a technique that individuals in the narcotics trade perform in order to pass cash/drugs to one another, in an effort to avoid detection of members of the law enforcement community. This hand to hand exchange took all of about 10 seconds. As soon as the wait staffer received what he received, he immediately turned around, walked back to the door entrance, and re-entered into Legal on the Mystic.

As he was walking back toward Artisan Way, he began working his cell phone once again. I called for Det. Shackelford to assist me. Det. Shackelford arrived on scene and met me on Artisan Way. The defendant entered into Kay Jeweler’s and spent @ 10 minutes inside the store. When he exited, Det. Shackelford and I approached him from the opposite side of the street. Det. Shackelford approached from the sidewalk/front and I approached from the left side/rear of the defendant. When I got within 10 ft. of the defendant, I took my Badge out from underneath my Dodgers shirt and prominently displayed it on the front of my chest. When I got within 2-3 ft. of the defendant, I announced myself as a Police Officer and went directly to his left side. I placed my hand on his left wrist and told him not to make any quick moves as we were conducting a drug investigation. He immediately jumped back in surprise. As he did, he threw several objects down, from his right hand, that was in his hoodie pocket. Those objects were thrown directly to the sidewalk and nearly hit Det. Shackelford’s sneakers. Det. Shackelford reached down and picked up the two items. The items were two, individually knotted, glassine baggies, containing a whitish, rocky substance (Crack Cocaine). I formed the opinion that the items were either Heroin or Crack Cocaine. It was later determined to be Crack Cocaine.

I placed my handcuffs on the defendant at this time due to Officer safety concerns and the potential of the destruction of contraband/evidence. Once the defendant was secured, I asked him if he had any further contraband on his person. He stated that he did not. I quickly patted down the pockets of the North Face hoodie. I located a cell phone, lighter, some napkin, and 1 more knotted glassine baggie containing a whitish, rocky substance (Crack Cocaine) from the defendant’s right hoodie pocket. Det. Shackelford handed me the two knotted baggies that he retrieved from the sidewalk.

At this time, I informed the defendant that he was under arrest for the above stated charges, he was transported to the Station.

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