NORWICH – One of two Norwich residents targeted in a recent drug raid appeared in City Court Tuesday to challenge the assertion that he committed any serious crime, asking the judge to throw out the top felony charges against him.
Following months of investigation by the Norwich City Police and New York State Troopers, police arrested 39-year-old David A. Cahill and his 21-year-old live-in girlfriend, Rachael A. Cummings, on charges of trafficking heroin at their residence at 4 Lee Ave.
Police forced their way into the home at 7:50 a.m. on Sept. 30, just moments after Cahill’s three children, ages 5, 7 and 9, boarded the bus for school.
Police seized nine individually-wrapped packages of heroin stamped with the words “Game Over” on them, each worth approximately $20 a piece on the street.
Cahill and Cummings had identical charges filed against them, the top count being third degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, a class B felony which prosecutors said carries a maximum sentence of 15 years in state prison.
The couple was also charged with first degree criminal nuisance, a class E felony, and second degree criminal use of drug paraphernalia, a misdemeanor.
Acting on Cahill’s behalf, Public Defender John D. Cameron called upon the prosecution to show the court that the discovered drugs could be connected to his client and prove that there was “reasonable cause” to charge him with the felony-level crimes.
Testifying at the felony hearing, Norwich Police Officer Reuben Roach said he discovered the heroin concealed inside a flashlight tucked into a dresser drawer.
The four-year police veteran was part of the department’s seven-man tactical entry team and then joined the evidence collection team, which was processing the site following the couple’s arrest. He told First Assistant District Attorney Stephen M. Dunshee he was tasked with searching the couple’s bedroom and that he had received special training on evidence detection and handling.
Cameron inquired if the officer had any knowledge of the search warrant which allegedly authorized the dynamic entry. Roach said he had no information regarding the warrant and Cameron demanded that the prosecution produce a copy for his and the court’s review...