Chief Michael P. Murphy
150 Park St.
North Reading, MA 01864
For Immediate Release
Thursday, March 30, 2017
Contact: John Guilfoil
North Reading Police Charge Man with Trafficking Fentanyl
NORTH READING — Chief Michael P. Murphy reports that a suspect was arrested after fleeing on foot during a traffic stop on Lowell Road Wednesday afternoon.
MANUEL PINA, AGE 21, OF LAWRENCE was arrested by State Police in Lawrence after North Reading Police notified area law enforcement agencies to be on the lookout for a suspect matching his description.
At 4:03 p.m., a North Reading Police Officer performed a traffic stop of a white Honda that had been observed running a red light at the intersection of Main Street and Lowell Road. Shortly afterward, the driver, identified as PINA fled on foot before being picked up by another man in a minivan. An investigation ensued, and Massachusetts State Police soon radioed that they had the suspect in custody in the City of Lawrence.
North Reading Police recovered a large plastic bag containing 22 smaller plastic bags filled with a powdery substance. That substance was determined to be 14 grams of Fentanyl, the dangerous synthetic opioid that is responsible for a sharp increase in overdose deaths around the Commonwealth recently.
PINA was charged with:
- Trafficking in a Class A Substance (Fentanyl)
- Failure to Stop for Police
- Giving a False Name and Address to a Police Officers
- Failure to Stop for a Red Light
- Operating a Motor Vehicle with a Suspended License (Subsequent Offense)
PINA was being held last night at the North Reading Police Department pending his arraignment Thursday in Woburn District Court.
“Fentanyl is an extremely dangerous substance that has made the nationwide opioid epidemic even worse,” Chief Murphy said. “Thankfully, multiple police departments worked together to quickly locate an alleged drug trafficker and remove a quantity of drugs from circulation.”
The Wakefield Police Department assisted at the scene with its K-9 unit, and the Wilmington Police Department also assisted North Reading Police.
These are allegations. All suspects are considered innocent until proven guilty.