Springfield man awaiting trial in Massachusetts on heroin trafficking charge
Will continue on Probation in Vermont for time being
WHITE RIVER JUNCTION - A young Springfield man who is awaiting trial in Massachusetts on heroin trafficking and possession charges was allowed to continue on probation in Vermont this past week despite a violation that resulted in three days of jail time.
Brandon Heist, 20, of Springfield plead guilty back in May to misdemeanor heroin possession as part of a plea agreement that saw the state dismiss an earlier felony charge of heroin possession as well as a misdemeanor charge of cocaine possession.
Heist was sentenced to 1-to-2 months with all of that jail time suspended so that he could spend a year on probation and attend substance abuse treatment but at the beginning of this month a warrant issued for his arrest because he'd failed to keep several appointments with his probation officer in July.
Heist was arrested last Wednesday and taken to the courthouse in White River Junction where he admitted to violating his probation terms and was sentenced to three days in jail as a result.
The felony charge that was dismissed had involved an October 30th traffic stop in Springfield in which Officer Ryan Prince said he searched Heist’s vehicle near a known drug house on Union Street and allegedly came up with 20 bags of heroin.
The misdemeanor Vermont charge that Heist was convicted of stemmed from a January 16th search warrant operation carried out by nine members of the Springfield Police into a residence on Pine Street which police took pains to point out is located next door to a pre-school.
It was the second raid on the property in four month’s time, with the previous search in September of last year having resulted in the seizure of 161 grams of marijuana from one of the rooms in the large house.
Officer Prince wrote that the January search turned up “a glass plate with a tan chalky powder on it” in Heist’s bedroom which he said tested positive for cocaine. Prince said that when Heist was confronted about the substance he told police “That’s not coke. That’s dope,” and later allegedly explained that he had set up “approximately three to four bags of heroin,” on the plate.
Police also reported finding drugs and paraphernalia in several other residents' rooms within the house, including Vicodin pills, bongs, scales, pot pipes and several empty heroin bags.
A month later, in February, Heist was arrested in Holyoke, Massachusetts on a Saturday night alongside Kyle Darrell, 25, after the pair were stopped for traffic violations on Interstate 91 where the Massachusetts State Police reported finding 790 bags of heroin in their car.
Heist was charged with driving despite a suspended license along with felony counts of heroin possession and trafficking.
Darrell was also charged at the time with heroin trafficking and failing to wear his seat belt.
Darrell was subsequently busted in March in Springfield, Vermont with what police allege were hundreds of bags of heroin stuffed in his pants as he stood in a parking lot behind the post office downtown. That arrest resulted in him also being charged with heroin trafficking in Vermont, to which he pleaded innocent at his formal arraignment, and Darrell is currently being held at the Springfield jail for lack of $15,000 bail while he awaits trial.
Heist’s next appearance in Holyoke’s district court is scheduled for September 12th.
Brandon Heist, 20, of Springfield, Vermont is awaiting trial in Massachusetts on a heroin trafficking charge
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