PITTSFIELD -- Police are investigating reports that a man waved a handgun at people at the YMCA facility on North Street on Sunday evening. They have recovered a pistol, but have not made an arrest.
"It’s an ongoing investigation," said Pittsfield Police Detective Lt. Michael Grady.
According to police, they responded to the YMCA at 292 North St. at about 8 p.m. Sunday for reports that a man was inside the gym with a gun. Police later located a .380-caliber pistol inside a backpack.
According to a police probable cause report, the incident may have been sparked by an argument during a basketball game. The reports prompted a large police response on Sunday night.
Meanwhile, during their investigation of the gun report, police arrested a 21-year-old man on drug charges.
Police said when they approached Rayquan B. Watford, of West Street, at the YMCA, he ran through an emergency exit and fled down North Street and on to Eagle Street. He allegedly dumped a pair of sneakers during the chase.
The shoes were recovered by officers and contained 19 bags of heroin and $170 in cash, police said. Watford was taken into custody a short distance away in a parking lot on Eagle Street near Pearl Street.
On Monday in Central Berkshire District Court, Watford denied single counts of felony possession of a class A drug with the intent to distribute and misdemeanor resisting arrest and disorderly conduct.
Assistant Berkshire District Attorney Kelly M. Kemp asked that Watford be held on $25,000 cash or surety bail. She said that while the defendant was a young man, he had managed to rack up a number of criminal charges.
In 2010, he was arrested by the Pittsfield Police after stealing two handguns, 9 mm semiautomatic Beretta and a .380-caliber semiautomatic Colt, from the father of a former girlfriend. A few days later, Watford brought one of the guns to Taconic High School where it was discovered by the police, according to Eagle records.
He was sentenced to 60 days in jail and probation in that case.
Watford’s attorney in his new case, Ryan D. Smith, told the court his client always showed up for court, was a lifelong resident of the area and a father who was active in his two children’s lives. He asked for $500 bail.
Judge Fredric D. Rutberg ordered $2,000 cash or $20,000 surety bail in the case. Watford was released on bail and is due back in court next month.
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