Suffolk police said they acted on a tip to score the arrest of “a significant dealer” with copious amounts of illegal substances at a Sound Beach home as part of a larger initiative to target drug dealing in the county.
Suffolk police Commissioner Timothy Sini said the Saturday arrest of Robert Trent, “a previous felon” known to the department, is part of an aggressive stance against illegal narcotics in a county that’s seen a rise in drug-overdose deaths. “We will not tolerate drug dealing in Suffolk County,” Sini said at a Monday morning news conference. “We are in the midst of a heroin epidemic and the police department will do its part to interrupt and disrupt drug operations” by making arrests and seizing drugs, cash and weapons until “there’s no safe place for a drug dealer.”
The arrest of Trent, 25, at a home on North Country Road in Sound Beach, also led to the seizure of drugs, cash and a handgun, all of which Sini termed “a nice little score” for the department. Officers were acting on a tip that came through the department’s new drug tip hotline, 631-852-NARC (6272).
Police seized 100 grams of heroin; 210 grams of powder cocaine; 740 grams of MDMA, also known as “Molly”; more than 1 kilogram of marijuana; a 9-mm semiautomatic weapon with ammunition; and more than $26,000 in cash, along with other drug paraphernalia. Two children, ages 3 and 5, were in the house and were referred to the care of protective services.
The amount of drugs seized was significant, with each gram of heroin potentially yielding dozens of doses, Sini said.
Sini said the tip was one of 415 instances in which the public has aided Suffolk police with information since the department stepped up narcotics enforcement in December — an operation that has resulted in 89 executed search warrants and 179 arrests with more than $1 million seized in cash and another $1 million worth of drugs.
In the past week alone, Suffolk police have executed nine search warrants to go “after drug houses,” including operations in Patchogue, Mastic Beach, Coram, Central Islip, West Islip and Holbrook. So far, that type of warrant has surpassed last year’s by 121 percent countywide.
Trent was charged with two counts of second-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, two counts of third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, third-degree criminal possession of a weapon, third-degree criminal possession of marijuana and two counts of endangering the welfare of a child, police said.
He was arraigned Saturday in First District Court in Central Islip and ordered held with bail set at $150,000 bond or $75,000 cash on the drug and weapon charges, as well as $2,000 bond or $1,000 cash on the endangerment charges, according to court records. The bail has not been posted.
Records indicate a temporary order of protection also was issued. Trent is scheduled to next appear in court on Thursday, records show.
With John Valenti