NORWICH — A 47-year-old New Berlin man was arrested early Wednesday morning by Norwich Police and was charged with a drug related felony and two misdemeanors. The man was held at the Norwich Police Department pending his arraignment this morning.
According to Norwich Police Chief Joseph Angelino, officers were instructed at roll call at 6:50 p.m. Tuesday to be on the lookout for a stolen car.
“At approximately 1:30 a.m., officers working saw the vehicle and approached it,” said Angelino. He added that officers initially thought the vehicle was unoccupied, yet an individual sat up in the vehicle as officers approached. The vehicle was in the parking lot of a City of Norwich business.
The New Berlin Police Department is the agency that put out the alert for the stolen vehicle.
Angelino said the man arrested was not the person in the vehicle, but he was nearby.
Arrested was Jose Iran Gonzalez, who was charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance in the third degree, a class B felony — possession with intent to sell; criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree, a class A misdemeanor; and unauthorized use of a motor vehicle in the third degree, a class A misdemeanor.
According to authorities, Gonzalez was found to be in possession of 45 envelopes containing heroin. Additionally, after further investigation, 10 Hydrocodone pills were said to have been found on his person.
Gonzalez was arraigned by Norwich City Court Judge James Downey at approximately 9 a.m. Downey advised Gonzalez of his rights.
According to the charges read by Downey, the Hydrocodone pills were said to have been found in Gonzalez’s back pocket in a clear bag. The heroin was said to have been found in bundles. With regard to the vehicle, it’s alleged that Gonzalez operated a vehicle without the owner’s consent.
Gonzalez told the court he wished for an attorney to represent him, and Downey told Gonzalez to fill out the application for a public defender before leaving the courthouse to go to the Chenango County Correctional Facility.
Judge Downey was unable to set a bail amount on Gonzalez.
“Looking at your rap sheet, it looks like you’ve got four prior felony convictions,” said Downey. “I can’t set bail, it has to be set by the county court.” Downey explained if an individual has been convicted of more than two felonies, County Court must set the bail. “In terms of setting bail, I don’t have the jurisdiction to do it.”
Downey explained to Gonzalez that the CCCF will typically allow more than one phone call if the individual is trying to work out bail arrangements.
“What are all these calls for if I ain’t got no bail?” asked Gonzalez.
Said Downey, “I assure you you’ve got people that care about you that would appreciate (a phone call) saying you’re alright; but you’ve got this big legal problem (to deal with).”
Gonzalez is scheduled to reappear in Norwich City Court Tuesday for his felony hearing where he will be represented by counsel.
Norwich Police’s K9 Nitro assisted in the investigation.
“I’m very proud of the officers for being alert and finding that car in a parking lot full of other cars,” said Angelino.
Gonzalez will be held at the CCCF currently without bail.