Real Life Somerville Police Stories: Jose RIVERA (OUI Liquor)

On 12/18/2018, while assigned to marked unit East-4. I was dispatched to a MV accident with injury. East-3 (Officer Catatao) was already on scene. I spoke to the operator of the struck vehicle, XXX. XXX stated that he was crossing the intersection of Central Street and Medford Street, both public ways in the City of Somerville, after stopped at the red light. When the light turned green, he began to cross over to the other side when he was struck on the driver’s side of his vehicle. He stated the driver then drove down the street. I then spoke to a witness, XXX. XXX stated he was waiting at the corner of Medford Street and Central, waiting for a bus. He stated he saw the vehicle strike XXX vehicle and then drive off.
Officer Catatao stated over the radio that she had found the striking vehicle and was a short distance away. She also requested a Spanish speaking officer to assist with translating. Officer Rivera, in East-1, was dispatched. Once XXX vehicle was towed from the scene, I made my way to where officer’s Catatao and Rivera had the driver. Officer Catatao stated she found the vehicle, running, with the suspect, identified as Mr. Jose Rivera in the driver’s seat. When I approached, Mr. Rivera had already exited the vehicle and was speaking to the other officer’s. As I approached Mr. Rivera to ask him what had happened, I noticed his eyes to be bloodshot and glossy, and his speech to be slurred. I also noticed a strong odor of alcohol on his breath. I asked Jose Rivera if he would perform some field sobriety tests. Officer Rivera Translated for me. Jose Rivera complied. I would note that Jose Rivera told Officer Rivera that he spoke some English. He also informed Officer Rivera that he had consumed several shots earlier in the evening.

Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus:
I asked Jose Rivera if he wore glasses or contacts and he stated no. I attempted to conduct the HGN several times and Jose Rivera was having difficulty with the instructions. He could not initially follow the stimulus and he could not follow without moving his head when he did follow the stimulus. At this point we crossed the street due to the sidewalk we were standing on was not level, free of debris, and it was poorly lit. We crossed the street where it was flat, free of debris, and well lit. While crossing the street, I noticed Jose Rivera to be unsteady on his feet. I attempted the HGN assessment again, to which Jose Rivera was able to perform it. I noticed lack of smooth pursuit in both eyes, distinct and sustained Nystagmus at maximum deviation in both eyes, and onset of Nystagmus prior to 45 degrees in both eyes. Jose Rivera did not have resting Nystagmus, nor did he have vertical Nystagmus.

Walk and Turn:
Jose Rivera was wearing flip flop style sandals. He stated that he was comfortable in these shoes to perform the test.
For this assessment, with the assistance of Officer Rivera, the task was explained and demonstrated to Jose Rivera. I would note there was difficulty explaining this test to him. Jose Rivera, several times started the test before being instructed to do so. He used his arms for balance; he missed his heel to toe steps on three separate times on the initial nine steps, performed the turn as directed, and missed twice on the second nine steps.

One Leg Stand-
Jose Rivera was getting visibly more unsteady on his feet; he was shaking and was not appropriately dressed for the weather. Jose River’s inability to follow any of the directions and with his well being in mind, this assessment was skipped.

PBT- Utilizing a Portable Breath Test, Jose Rivera’s BAC came to a .182

Jose Rivera was placed under arrest (DL) and was transported to the Somerville Police Station via unit 200 (Prisoner transport vehicle)
He was booked in the usual manner by Lieutenant Rymill.

During an inventory of Jose Rivera’s property, a small bag containing a white powdered substance was found. In my training and experience I believed this to be Cocaine. The Substance was field tested and was positive for Cocaine.

A CJIS inquiry of Jose Riveras OLN number came back to a revoked license.

RIVERA has been charged with:
OUI Liquor
Negligent Operation of a motor vehicle
Operation of a motor vehicle after revocation
Possession of a class B substance.

RIVERA was issued MA Uniform Citation T1315041
The substance believed to be Cocaine will be submitted into evidence for testing
All OUI documents will be submitted into evidence

Respectfully submitted,

Officer Christopher Fusco #328

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