Thursday, December 2, 2010

Routine Traffic Stop Leads to Drug Bust

by John Larson

A Las Cruces man on Wednesday, Dec. 1, was bound over to District Court by Magistrate Judge Jim Naranjo on three felony narcotics counts, including the possession, and trafficking, of the narcotic ecstasy and conspiracy to commit a crime. He was also charged with possession of marijuana, which is a misdemeanor.
Kevin J. Wilson, 19, was arrested on Nov. 21 following a routine traffic stop on Interstate 25.
Arrested with Wilson was David A. Pedraza, 21, also of Las Cruces. Pedraza pleaded guilty for possession of less than one ounce of marijuana, a petty misdemeanor.
Making the arrest was Socorro Sheriff’s Deputy Casey Spurgin, who said he learned that Wilson and Pedraza were on their way back from Colorado Springs, Colo., where they were allegedly selling the pills at “raves” for $10 to $15 per pill.
According to the criminal complaint, Spurgin pulled over Wilson’s car, which had been clocked at traveling 85 miles per hour, in the southbound lane of Interstate 25. Spurgin said he noticed a “heavy odor of burnt marijuana” coming from the driver’s side window, and asked the driver for his license, insurance and registration.
“While talking to the driver (Wilson), I noticed his hands were trembling, his voice was cracking and he was just fumbling for various papers,” Spurgin said. “When he finally handed me his driver’s license, he said he was just a college student trying to get home.”
Spurgin asked him to step out of the vehicle, and directed Wilson to go to the back of the car.
According to Spurgin, Wilson started rapidly moving around, repeating that he was just a college student, saying he has a future ahead of him, that he’s trying to move out of his parents’ house. “I asked him if he had any more marijuana in the vehicle, and if so, now was the time to produce it,” said Spurgin.
“Wilson took me to the passenger’s door and told the passenger, Pedraza, to hand over the marijuana. After denying that he knew anything about marijuana, Pedraza pulled a baggie out of his pocket,” Spurgin said.
When asked if there were any other narcotics in the vehicle, Wilson assured Spurgin there were none.
“After he gave me permission to search the vehicle, I opened the driver’s side door and immediately in front of me in the center console was a clear plastic baggie containing a number of small, round pills,” Spurgin said. “I asked him what they were and at first he said that he’s never seen those before in his life.”
Wilson then admitted that they were ecstasy pills, and after waiving his Miranda rights told Spurgin he had originally purchased 390 pills in Las Cruces but had only taken 250 to Colorado Springs, where he and Pedraza sold 80 to 100 pills. Spurgin found 141 ecstasy pills in the baggie.
Spurgin was assisted in the arrest by Sheriff’s Deputies Ed Sweeney and Zack Holcomb.
Wilson’s preliminary hearing in district court has not been scheduled as of press time on Wednesday. He was released to the custody of his parents.

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