SURVEILLANCE GIVES EVIDENCE OF DRUG TRADE ON HOUSTON ST.
Days of investigative surveillance on a Cotulla residence by the La Salle County Sheriff’s Office resulted in a raid by a tactical team Saturday, July 8, and two arrests on a range of drug possession charges.
Investigators are crediting public awareness among the factors that triggered the case, and a search warrant for the property in the 1100 block of Houston Street was signed Saturday by 81st Judicial District Judge Jennifer Dillingham.
Sheriff Anthony Zertuche said this week that area residents who had observed unusual activity at the residence had notified his office of the possibility that drug traffic was underway there; extensive investigations and surveillance followed in the days leading up to the raid, he said.
“There was high traffic at the property, which in this case was indicative of possible criminal activity,” the sheriff said on Monday. “Our surveillance provided evidence that this activity was consistent with a street-level narcotics operation.”
“We were pleased to be able to execute this search warrant effectively and intervene in the illegal activity by those involved in this criminal enterprise,” the sheriff said.
The sheriff’s office deployed a high-risk entry team with four tactically trained officers equipped with breaching tools, the sheriff said, and deputies entered the property at 8 p.m. Saturday to find two women in possession of narcotics ranging from marijuana and prescription drugs to cocaine and methamphetamine.
Sheriff’s Lieutenant Homar Olivarez said the methamphetamine tipped the scales at 48 grams, the cocaine at 6.8 grams. A variety of prescription pills were contained in small bags and a bottle. The marijuana was contained in at least two bags.
“These quantities are evidence that narcotics distribution and sales were underway at the property,” the lieutenant said.
Charged in the case are Consuelo Ann Roath, 48, arrested on two second-degree felony counts of possession of a controlled substance in Penalty Group 1/1b, two Class A misdemeanor counts of possession of a controlled substance in Penalty Group 3, a Class A misdemeanor for possession of a dangerous drug, and a Class B misdemeanor for possession of marijuana; and Liza Marie Sanchez, 43, arrested on a Class A misdemeanor charge for possession of a dangerous drug.
The suspects were transported to the La Salle County Jail without further incident. Sanchez was jailed at 11:35 p.m. Saturday, Roath at 2:20 a.m. Sunday. Both were released on bond Sunday.
Two men who were found at the property were questioned and released, according to the sheriff’s office. Lt. Olivarez said their possible involvement in the narcotics traffic is still under investigation.
“We have seen an increase in methamphetamine traffic, and it remains our mission to protect the safety of our residents while disrupting the narcotics operations in our community,” Sheriff Zertuche said this week. “I want to commend my staff on the outstanding job they did in this investigation.”