Police make drug busts

PNT Staff Report

Area law officers arrested three people in two separate drug busts Tuesday in Portales. The busts netted what police say were large amounts of crack cocaine and marijuana.

Police started the busts shortly after 5 p.m. Tuesday at 1112 W. 15th St., less than a block from the Eastern New Mexico University campus. It was there they arrested Bonifacio Hernandez, 53, of Portales, on suspicion of distribution of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia, according to police reports.

Police said they received information through a confidential informant who alleged they had bought marijuana from Hernandez at that location on Sunday.

After securing a search warrant, police went to the address, which was listed as Hernandez’ home. A team of officers secured the suspect and found three large packages of suspected marijuana, each weighing about a pound, in the crisper drawer of the refrigerator. Another small bag with suspected marijuana was found under a couch cushion and rolling papers and a scale were found in the kitchen, according to the report.

Hernandez was arrested and booked into Roosevelt County Detention Center with bond totaling $7,500. He was still in jail Wednesday afternoon.

After police finished up with Hernandez they had a confidential informant arrange by phone with another suspect to buy crack cocaine at a residence at 423 N. Ave. K, Apt. 6 in Portales, according to reports. As they entered, two individuals ran from the residence but were caught by police. After searching the house, police found what appeared to be crack cocaine on the kitchen counter, reports show.

Police found suspected crack cocaine totaling 25.5 grams and 2.1 grams of suspected powder cocaine in the residence.

“That’s a large amount,” Portales Police Capt. Lonnie Berry said.

Berry said crack cocaine normally sells for around $100 per gram on the street.

Arrested was Salvador Espinoza, 27, of Portales, and Daniel Flores, 23, of Portales. Both are accused of distribution of cocaine.

Espinoza, who was out on bond, from a previous arrest, was ordered held without bond. Flores was placed under a $6,000 bond. Both suspects remained incarcerated at RCDC Wednesday afternoon.

The Roosevelt County Sheriff’s Department and Eastern New Mexico University police were involved in the arrests, along with Portales police, officials said.