5 face drug charges after series of raids

Police seize cash, cocaine and marijuana at sites in city, two counties

September 11, 1999|By Mike Farabaugh | Mike Farabaugh,SUN STAFF

Five people, including two people accused of being high-level marijuana and cocaine suppliers, were arrested on drug charges yesterday after state and local police conducted a series of raids, authorities said.

Police seized nearly $15,000, more than a pound of marijuana, two ounces of cocaine and drug paraphernalia during four raids Thursday in Northwest Baltimore, Owings Mills and at two locations in Westminster, said Capt. Dean Brewer of the Westminster Police.

The investigation, which began in April, is not over, Brewer said. It is a joint effort of the Maryland State Police, Carroll County Sheriff's Office and the Carroll County Narcotics Task Force.

Officers carried out a series of raids on Aug. 5 that netted a small amount of drugs and about 20 arrests of suspected street-level dealers, said Detective Sgt. Douglas Wehland of the task force. By then, at least two undercover troopers had "infiltrated the network leading to those we believe were the key suppliers for those arrested in August," he said.

Thursday's first raid occurred at 6 a.m. in the 3500 block of Rosedale Road near Mondawmin, where officers seized documents police believe link members of the drug network, Brewer said.

In simultaneous raids at 5: 30 p.m., police entered an Owings Mills apartment on Woodstream Court, a Westminster apartment in the first block of Carroll Street and a Westminster clothing store in the first block of W. Main St.

According to court records, those arrested were:

James D. Messina, 44, of the Carroll Street apartment. He was charged with possession with intent to distribute marijuana and cocaine, possession of marijuana, cocaine and crack cocaine, three counts of possession of drug paraphernalia, and maintaining a common nuisance.

He also was charged with distribution of marijuana, possession of marijuana and paraphernalia and maintaining a common nuisance, all stemming from an alleged sale of marijuana to an undercover trooper on July 22.

Messina was being held at the Carroll County Detention Center in lieu of $50,000 bail in each case, court records show.

Steven D. Cottom, 22, of the first block of Charles Street in Westminster. He was arrested in Owings Mills and held without bond after being charged with manufacturing and distribution of crack cocaine, possession of crack cocaine and possession with intent to distribute crack cocaine.

Louis L. Slate Jr., 34, of the 400 block of Hook Road in Westminster. He was released on personal recognizance after being charged with possession of marijuana and possession of paraphernalia.

Troy G. Stanley, 33, of the first block of Pennsylvania Ave. in Westminster. He was held in lieu of $15,000 bail after being charged with possession of crack cocaine, possession of marijuana and possession of paraphernalia.

Paula M. Barnes, 26, of the 200 block of Westminster Ave. in Westminster. She was held in lieu of $25,000 bail after being charged with possession with intent to distribute marijuana, possession of marijuana, possession of crack cocaine, and possession with intent to distribute cocaine.

When the Carroll Street raid occurred, Slate and Stanley were inside the basement apartment and Barnes was walking out, Brewer said.

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