14 busted for drugs outside 'Dead' tribute concert
BRIDGEPORT -- Undercover cops smoked out a series of illegal sales Thursday night outside the Grateful Dead tribute concert performed at The Klein, the city-owned auditorium on Fairfield Avenue, police said.
Fourteen people, from both Connecticut and out of state, were arrested after police said they seized a large amount of cocaine, LSD, hashish, marijuana and hallucinogenic mushrooms along with more than $19,000 in cash.
The Police Department's Tactical Narcotics Team set up an undercover operation in the parking lot of The Klein on Fairfield Avenue after learning that drug use and sales was likely to take place there prior to the concert by the Dark Star Orchestra.
Within minutes of setting up surveillance in the parking lot, police said officers allegedly saw Sean Healey, 22, of Shari Drive, Seymour, walk up to Justin Torok, 27, of Waterbury, and inquire about purchasing marijuana. Torok directed Healey to Tracey Van Claude, 21, of Oakville, was selling merchandise on a table in front of a Chevrolet van, police said.
Healey handed Torok cash, and Van Claude opened the van's side door and handed Healey a small bag.
Healey was stopped by police a short distance away and allegedly admitted he had just purchased marijuana, police said. He handed over a small bag containing the drug, they said.
After police said Torok and Van Claude made several more drug sales, an undercover officer was dispatched to introduce himself to Torok. Hethen brought the undercover officer to Van Claude, who sold the officer marijuana, police said.
Across the parking lot, police Lt. William Bailey reported seeing several drug deals transpire from a 1995 Buick Century sedan.
One by one, police said, drug buyers climbed into the rear seat of the car, handed money to the driver, identified as Ernest Malono, 43, of Chester, Pa., and then collect a plastic bag from Malono's front-seat passenger, Connie Kain, 42, of Wallingford.
When police approached Malono and Kain, they found several bags of hallucinogenic mushrooms, sheets of papers coated with LSD, a quantity of hashish and 22 white capsules in the car, according to the report.
Nearby, people had lined up outside a white Jeep, police said. The driver, William Quinn, 22, of Warner Hill Road, Fairfield, was selling drugs from his vehicle, police said. Cocaine and ecstasy pills were recovered from people who bought the illegal drugs from Quinn, police said.
At one point, a car pulled up alongside an unmarked police car in the parking lot and two men, Andrew Erdos, 29, and his brother, Matthew Erdos, 26, both of Milford, got out and began hawking marijuana, police said. Both men were arrested after a brief struggle, and police said they found marijuana and Percocet pills in the Erdos' car along with more than $11,000 in cash.
Those arrested in the drug sweep outside the concert were: Torok, two counts each of conspiracy to sell marijuana and possession of marijuana; Van Claude, sale of marijuana, possession of marijuana with intent to sell; Healey, possession of marijuana; Quinn, sale of a controlled substance, possession of a controlled substance, possession of marijuana; Malono, sale of a hallucinogenic substance, possession of a hallucinogenic substance; Kain, conspiracy to sell a hallucinogenic substance, possession of a hallucinogenic substance; Andrew Erdos, conspiracy to sell marijuana; Matthew Erdos, conspiracy to sell marijuana and possession of narcotics.
Also, Sean Majoros, 27, of Helen Street, Fairfield, possession of a hallucinogenic substance; Nuno Cotto, 26, of Kossuth Street, Bridgeport, possession of marijuana with intent to sell, possession of narcotics with intent to sell; Xavier Vazquez, 23, of Orland Street, Bridgeport, possession of narcotics with intent to sell; Daniela Souza, 33, of Milford Avenue, Stratford, possession of marijuana, possession of narcotics; Elizabeth Shanley, 30, of Mount Vernon, N.Y., possession of narcotics; Jesse Griffin, 31, of Warrick Avenue, Stratford, possession of narcotics, possession of marijuana
By Daniel Tepfer
Staff writer 11/20/2009