Pittsfield police raid leads to drug arrest


PITTSFIELD -- A city man with a history of dealing drugs pleaded not guilty to drug trafficking and other charges on Friday, a day after a police raid allegedly turned up crack, heroin, cash and ammunition that was hidden throughout his home.

Shaun T. Koonce, 33, was arrested late Thursday after members of the Pittsfield police, the Berkshire County Drug Task Force and the county Special Response Team executed a no-knock warrant on his South Street apartment at about 10:30 p.m.

The search turned up more than 20 grams of crack cocaine, 114 bags of heroin, $6,500 in cash, drug-dealing paraphernalia and ammunition for a .44 magnum handgun. No weapon was found.

All told, the police say the street value of the drugs along with the cash totaled more than $10,000.

Koonce was cooperative with police during the raid, telling them where he had hidden the drugs, according to a police report. Drugs were found in a kitchen cupboard and in bags of rice on top of a refrigerator and in a closet.

Police found $6,400 in cash in the pocket of a shirt and the ammunition was found tucked in a shoe.

Koonce pleaded not guilty in Central Berkshire District Court on Friday to single counts of trafficking in cocaine (18 grams to 36 grams), possession of heroin to distribute as a subsequent offense and illegal possession of ammunition.

Judge Fredric D. Rutberg ordered Koonce held on $3,500 cash or $35,000 surety bail.

Koonce, who is represented by the Committee for Public Counsel Services, is due back in court on Oct. 11.

The case will likely be heading to Superior Court. Both the drug charges carry a minimum mandatory sentence: two years in state prison for the cocaine charge and 31 2 years for the heroin charge. The maximum sentences for both charges are 15 years in state prison.

According to police, Koonce was convicted of possession of cocaine with the intent to distribute in 2009.


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