Police Arrest Second Man Said to be Connected with Sunday Murder, Armed Robbery in Methuen

A second man, believed to be connected to last Sunday’s deadly shooting in Methuen, was arrested Wednesday while awaiting a flight out of New York City. Twenty-two-year-old Kelvin Francisco-Perez of Lawrence was arrested by Customs and Border Patrol agents and Port Authority Police while awaiting a flight at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York City. Essex County District Attorney Paul F. Tucker and Methuen Police Chief Scott J. McNamara said in a joint statement, Francisco-Perez was charged under a warrant with accessory after the fact, murder, and accessory after the fact, armed robbery related to the early Sunday killing of Carlos Bello, who was shot in the Haverhill Street area of Methuen and later pronounced dead at Lawrence General Hospital. Seventeen-year-old Adrian Isabel of Methuen was also charged Tuesday afternoon with murder after surrendering. As is customary, a not guilty plea was entered during his arraignment on Wednesday in Lawrence District Court.

Methuen Police Arrest Three, Including Haverhill Man, for Alleged Fentanyl, Cocaine Dealing

A Haverhill man and two people from Rochester, N.H., were arrested by Methuen Police Tuesday and charged with dealing in fentanyl and crack cocaine. Methuen Police Chief Scott J. McNamara said in a statement Wednesday more than 35 grams of fentanyl and more than 30 grams of crack cocaine and $5,700 in cash were seized after officers saw an alleged drug deal taking place between cars around 3:15 p.m., near Cochrane Circle. After stopping and searching the cars involved, police said, officers arrested 31-year-old Gabriel DeJesus of Haverhill and 45-year-old Acquila Green and 44-year-old Mindy Vachon, both of Rochester, N.H. All three were charged with trafficking in fentanyl and crack cocaine. The department’s Street Crimes Unit was monitoring the area after receiving complaints about drug dealing. DeJesus was held on $25,000 bail while Green and Vachon were each held on $15,000 bail.

Methuen Police Arrest Barricaded Person; Identity Protected by Legislature’s Secrecy Law

An unnamed person, protected by the state legislature’s 2014 secrecy law, who was barricaded with, what police said, was “live” ammunition inside a Methuen home was arrested by Methuen police Sunday night. Methuen Police Chief Scott J. McNamara said “the individual was taken into custody without incident shortly before 9 p. m. Sunday. A live round of ammunition was found inside the residence, and Methuen Police are continuing to investigate.”

Shortly before 5 p.m., Sunday, Methuen Police responded to a home on Arabian Drive for a report that “a suspect in a prior incident” was at the residence. The Northeast Massachusetts Law Enforcement Council SWAT Team, known as NEMLEC for short, was dispatched for support. Police openly blamed the legislature for the lack of transparency, saying, “Due to the domestic violence law of 2014, Methuen Police are prohibited from releasing additional information about the suspect or the circumstances of the incident.” Critics of the law say it protects perpetrators and not victims.

Judge Sends Lawrence Man to Prison for Five Years for Selling Ghost Guns, Fentanyl in Area

A35-year-old Lawrence man was sentenced last week in federal court in Boston for selling ghost guns, ammunition and fentanyl in the area. Miguel Mejia was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge William G. Young to five years in prison and four years of supervised release. Last September, Mejia pleaded guilty to dealing in firearms without a license and possession with intent to distribute distribution of 40 grams of more fentanyl. “Stopping the flow of illegal firearms into our communities is the most critical step in combatting violent crime. Ghost guns are particularly dangerous because in addition to being deadly, they are unlicensed and untraceable,” said U.S. Attorney Rachael S. Rollins.

State Police Arrest Apparently Armed Man with Drugs at Interstate 495 Rest Area in Haverhill

State Police, conducting a wellness check last Thursday on a driver parked along a guardrail at an Interstate 495 rest stop in Haverhill, discovered a Maine man with a loaded gun and what appeared to be heroin and other drugs. State Police troopers out of the Newbury barracks arrested 34-year-old Robert Rutty of Limerick, Maine, after first spotting two bags of brown powder believed to be heroin in plain site on the car’s dashboard. Trooper Mark Thomas was the first to see a Hyundai Santa Fe parked and idling at the rest area on I- 495 north in Haverhill. Rutty obeyed orders to leave the car, troopers said, but “became very restless and agitated and started walking around and appeared to be frantically trying to conceal his hands.”

Rutty refused to sit and then attempted to run. Thomas succeeded in grabbing the man and lowering him to the ground.

Grand Jury Indicts Two Following Fight at Middleton Jail; Sheriff Says Violent Aggression Increasing

Two inmates at the Middleton Jail and House of Correction were indicted by a grand jury last week on charges stemming from their roles in an Oct. 22 fight that injured two correctional officers. Twenty-six-year-old Jorge Delgado-Medina of Melrose was charged with assault and battery and assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, while 18-year-old Adrian Corniel De La Cruz of Lawrence was charged with two counts of armed assault with intent to murder, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon and assault with a dangerous weapon. “We will not tolerate attacks on our officers. We will prosecute and we will seek justice,” said Essex County Sheriff Kevin F. Coppinger.

New Jersey Man Pleads Guilty to Using Stolen IDs in Local Scheme to Buy $140,124 in Cars

A 46-year-old New Jersey man pleaded guilty Friday to his role in a scheme to use the stolen identities of U.S. citizens from Puerto Rico to fraudulently purchase vehicles and other merchandise and use bank accounts and credit cards. Jose Irizarry of Union City, N.J., pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud, wire fraud, aggravated identity theft and false representation of a Social Security number. U.S. District Court Judge Patti B. Saris scheduled sentencing for April 6. Haverhill, Methuen and Lawrence Police Departments were among those credited with helping to prosecute Irizarry. The U.S. Attorney’s office in Boston previously said the scheme involved 37-year-old Alvin Rivera of Haverhill and 43-year-old Neida Lopez of Methuen.

Methuen Man, 19, Pleads Guilty to Federal Charges of Firearms Thefts

A 19-year-old Methuen man pleaded guilty Thursday in federal court to conspiring to steal firearms from federally licensed gun dealers. According to court documents and statements made in court, between Aug. 29, 2021 and Oct. 4, that year, Johariel Quezada conspired with others to steal firearms from three New Hampshire federal firearms licensees. During that time, more than 40 firearms were stolen from Milford Firearms in Milford, N.H.; Second Amendment Arms in Windham, N.H.; and MacPhearson Firearms in Brentwood, N.H.

Multiple stolen firearms were seized from Quezada’s Methuen home.