Accused heroin user barred from Shady Lawn Motel
Reportedly going door-to-door with heroin
WHITE RIVER JUNCTION - A White River Junction resident accused of “bouncing from room-to-room” with heroin at the Shady Lawn Motel in recent weeks was in court Monday facing charges.
Jeffrey Douglas, 33, pleaded innocent to both a felony and a misdemeanor count of possession of heroin before he was released from the courthouse on pre-trial conditions which included a court-order requiring him to contact a licensed drug and alcohol counselor and get involved in substance abuse treatment.
Douglas was also ordered not to set foot on the Shady Lawn property while his cases, which together carry a maximum potential penalty of up to 11 years in prison if he were to be convicted, are still pending.
Hartford's emergency services have responded to several overdoses at the Shady Lawn this year
Hartford Police Officer Eric Clifford wrote in his report that “the Shady Lawn Motel is know to the Hartford Police to be a hub of drug use and distribution” and he said that on August 18th a resident of the motel tipped him off to alleged suspicious activity on Douglas’ part.
Officer Clifford said that when he arrived late that afternoon he found Douglas out front in the parking lot and he began asking Douglas about what he was doing there.
“I asked Douglas if he had ever used heroin,” Officer Clifford wrote. “Douglas advised he has been clean of heroin for around two or three years and just moved back to town from Connecticut.”
“As I spoke with Douglas I observed a fresh injection site on his right arm (which) was reddened, raised up and appeared to be oozing a clear liquid. Douglas’ pupils were pin-pointed and his speech was slightly slurred and slowed,” Clifford recalled.
Officer Clifford had his police dog, Dozer, take a sniff around Douglas’ backpack and said the canine quickly gave an `alert’ and began scratching at the item.
It was at that point “Douglas then advised me he had `a few bundles’ of heroin in his backpack,” Clifford noted.
Clifford said a subsequent search of the backpack turned up 48 full heroin bags and 43 empties containing trace amounts of heroin along with hypodermic needles and a drug `prep-kit’ that included a lighter and heroin cooking tray.
Jeffrey Douglas at his arraignment Monday afternoon where attorney Elizabeth Kruska acted as his public defender
Two weeks later, on September 5th, Clifford arrested Douglas again after stopping him for speeding along Sykes Mountain Avenue in a rental car with Connecticut plates.
Clifford said the car smelled of burnt marijuana and Douglas appeared unusually nervous with his hands “noticeably shaking” and “heavy pulsing of his shirt in the area of his abdomen.”
Douglas claimed to have known both of the passengers in his car for three years; however, Office Clifford said Douglas also claimed he could not remember their last names and identified them only as “Ant” and “Alex.”
Clifford said that “Ant” turned out to be Christopher Alexander Barros, 22, a probationer from Connecticut who was convicted there last year of sale of narcotics and possession of a dangerous weapon. Clifford wrote that as a result of those convictions Barros had been ordered not to leave the state of Connecticut, something he said Barros admitted to him when Barros allegedly acknowledged he was not supposed to be in Vermont under the terms of his probation.
Police seized the vehicle and, after a search warrant was granted the next day, officers reported finding “hundreds of plastic baggies, several phones, a 9mm magazine for a pistol, a digital scale, and a heroin cook tray (that) had a trace amount of heroin in it which tested positive for heroin.”
Four days later, police tracked Douglas back down, once again in the parking lot of the Shady Lawn, and re-arrested him, charging him with misdemeanor possession of heroin in connection with their search of the rental car.
Back in 2003 Douglas had been convicted in Hartford, Vermont of misdemeanor possession of marijuana and in 2014 in Hartford, Connecticut he picked up a pair of felony convictions for possession of narcotics and possession of drug paraphernalia.