Pittsfield man held on trafficking charge after allegedly tossing drugs from SUV
PITTSFIELD -- A city man already facing a felony assault charge is being held without bail after he was allegedly caught with more than an ounce of cocaine during a traffic stop.
Christopher J. Davis, 30, of Shore Drive, threw a large bag of cocaine out the window of his sport utility vehicle after being pulled over just before 10 p.m. Monday for failing to stop at a stop sign, according to Pittsfield police.
His two passengers, Adrien Bertoli and Sara Salzarulo, both 21 and from Pittsfield, also were arrested during the stop on Tyler Street.
Pittsfield Police Officer Mark Sniezek Jr. pulled the vehicle over and smelled "an overwhelming odor of unburned marijuana" as he approached the SUV, according to a police probable cause report.
When other officers arrived, the other occupants were taken out and frisked. Police said they recovered a bag of cocaine weighing a little over 15 grams from Bertoli's pocket as well as about $750 in cash. While Bertoli was being frisked, Davis, who was still in the vehicle, allegedly threw a bag of cocaine weighing close to 30 grams out of the SUV's window. The police said they recovered the bag of cocaine -- with a street value of about $2,800 -- and also confiscated a small amount of marijuana and close to $1,200 in cash from Davis.
Police said they found half of an oxycodone pill in Salzarulo's purse. Because she didn't have a prescription for the drug she was charged with illegal possession of a class B substance.
Davis, appearing with attorney Anthony Gianacopoulos, pleaded not guilty in Central Berkshire District Court on Tuesday to a single charge of felony trafficking in cocaine.
Assistant Berkshire District Attorney Robert Royce asked the court to revoke Davis' bail on the earlier case and requested a higher bail than the $500 set Monday night by an assistant clerk-magistrate.
Gianacopolous questioned the need for additional bail since his client had been released on $500 Monday night and appeared on his own for arraignment on Tuesday.
He said there wasn't enough probable cause to search the SUV's occupants and that he would likely be filing a motion to suppress any evidence resulting from the stop.
Judge Paul M. Vrabel revoked Davis' bail on an open January case in which a man alleged he hit him in the face with a roll of dimes and displayed a gun.
In that case, Davis is facing a felony charge of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon that was brought by a private complaint, meaning the police weren't involved in bringing the charge. That case is scheduled for trial on April 3. Davis is held without bail until that date.
The judge also set bail on the new case at $2,500 cash or $25,000 surety bail.
On Tuesday, Bertoli denied a charge of possession of cocaine with the intent to distribute and was released on $200 bail.
Salzarulo pleaded not guilty to her misdemeanor charge and was released on personal recognizance.
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