Monday, August 15, 2005

Pot found in teddy bear: 2 arrested

Police have arrested a Rohnert Park man and his girlfriend after the owner of a 24-hour shipping store opened a package the man was sending and found a teddy bear stuffed with nearly a pound of marijuana.

Gilberto Perez Pereira, 43, and Susan Janette Roark, 48, were arrested Friday on drug and related charges.

The owner of the store told police he had grown suspicious of Pereira because he had been sending overnight packages every two weeks to different addresses in Wisconsin for the past several months.

The owner would have casual conversations with Pereira, who was paying top-dollar to ship items overnight using DHL, said Rohnert Park police Sgt. Art Sweeney.

"He thought something didn't fit," Sweeney said.

The owner contacted police Thursday after he opened one of the packages and found a teddy bear with crude stitching covering a cut in the fabric and a heavy object inside.

Sweeney said that as the proprietor of the store, the man had a right to inspect customers' goods in order to ensure they weren't dangerous or illegal before shipping them.

Officers from the Special Enforcement Unit opened the stuffed animal and found a ball consisting of 30 feet of cellophane layered with yellow mustard and powdered carpet deodorizer surrounding a heat-sealed package of marijuana, according to police.

Police said such packaging commonly is used by drug dealers to put drug detection dogs off the scent. Meanwhile, Pereira had been tracking the package on the Internet and on Friday called the store to ask why the shipment was still in Rohnert Park. The owner --as instructed by police -- told Pereira that he needed to return to the store and pay a few more dollars in shipping costs.
A few minutes later, Pereira and his girlfriend arrived and gave the owner more money. Officers stopped the car as Roark drove away and allegedly found her and Pereira to be in possession of 1/2 gram of methamphetamine each, police said.

Roark is on probation in Sonoma County for a drug possession conviction. Officers searched the couple's apartment at 6500 Country Club Drive and allegedly found evidence linking Pereira to the shipment at issue as well as previous shipments. Police also found shotgun shells and a small quantity of methamphetamine, police said.

Pereira, who has served several prison terms for drug convictions, told police that he had been shipping the packages for a friend. He said he didn't know what was in them, or how to reach the friend.

Pereira was booked into Sonoma County jail on $25,000 bail for possession of methamphetamine, possession of drug paraphernalia, shipment of drugs over state lines, transportation of marijuana and being a felon in possession of firearms ammunition.

Roark was being held without bail and was charged with possession of methamphetamine, possession of drug paraphernalia, violation of probation and driving with a suspended license.


Blogger Kayaboy said...

Was it legal for the owner of the shipping store to open someone's package? This smells a little fishy to me. Anyone else have thoughts on this?

8/15/2005 03:09:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

who cares if it is legal or not for a person who shouldn't have firearms and does (he is a lawbreaker and he is the scum of the earth!) When he violates his parole doesn;t he forfeit his privacy rights? He's a druggy dear. Do you have kids? Don't you think children and innocent americans have the right to be protected by people like this?

8/18/2005 06:06:00 PM  
Blogger Busty Wilde said...

I agree that everyone should be protected from people like this, but I also believe strongly in personal rights. I would assume the guy gave up his privacy by sending his package through the store in question, but I still think that sucks. Then again, I would have been way more paranoid and wouldn't send drugs through the mail.

8/18/2005 07:37:00 PM  
Blogger Kayaboy said...

In response to anonymous, first he wasn't found with a firearm just shotgun shells. Second he was on probabtion for drug possesion (I'm assuming this means it was a non-violent offense as he wasn't charged with anything else). So, what kind of person is this to be afraid of? With the little information that we have on this man, how can you automatically assume he is dangerous. I know poeple who own guns and ammunition (it is protected in our Bill of Rights), and I know people who buy and sell drugs. These two facts do not make someone inherently dangerous. Finally, how was his activities going to affect children or innocent americans? There was nothing in the article about selling drugs to children.

So anonymous, stop reading things into the article and read what was written. Drug use in and of itself should not be criminalized.

8/19/2005 11:36:00 AM  
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