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Two alleged Fall River gang members arrested on drug distribution, firearm charges



Fall River Police arrested a city man and a juvenile on several charges stemming from an investigation on gang members.

According to FRPD, Officer Erick Bettencourt of the Fall River Police Department Gang Unit conducted an investigation for several weeks into the illegal possession of firearms by known members of the Gangster Disciples. During his investigation, he developed information on two locations where gang members were using “stash houses” for guns. After obtaining two search warrants for 8 Orswell Street 2nd Floor and 370 Ferry Street 3rd Floor, members of the Fall River Police Department Gang Unit, Special Operations Division, Southeastern Massachusetts FBI Gang Task Force which includes members of the Massachusetts State Police, Fall River Police and FBI organized a plan to conduct surveillance and also planned to execute the search warrants simultaneously due to the concerns for evidence being destroyed and the possibility of the occupants being armed and dangerous.

The targets of the investigation were Jose Colon-Ortiz (20 years old) of Fall River and a 17-year-old male juvenile. At approximately 12:15PM, Undercover surveillance task force members observed Colon-Ortiz exit the residence at 370 Ferry Street and meet with an unidentified male. Based on the interaction Colon-Ortiz had with this male, they believed he was conducting a drug transaction. Shortly thereafter, Colon-Ortiz exited the residence with the 17-year-old Juvenile male. They entered a vehicle and began leaving the area. Officer Matthew Mendes, Trooper Paul Dunderdale (MSP) and Officer Greg Homen observed that the males that had entered the vehicle were in fact the targets of the search warrant. A motor vehicle stop was conducted and after a brief investigation officers observed a gun on the rear passenger floor near the juvenile’s foot. After recovering the gun, it was found to be loaded with 3 remaining rounds in the clip. The gun was identified as a “CZ-52 7.62 TOK CZECH”. This handgun is capable of firing 7.62 caliber ammunition which can penetrate body armor.

All occupants of the vehicle were detained and after conclusion of the investigation. Officers recovered 8.8 grams of Marijuana, digital scales and 26 xanax pills from the vehicle. After executing the search warrant at 370 Ferry Street 3rd floor, officers located 19.2 grams of marijuana, a scale and packaging materials. Also, hidden in a drop ceiling, officers located a black XBG pellet gun. At 8 Orswell Street, officers also located another replica pellet handgun. Also in closing, a total of $1925.00 was also seized as proceeds from suspected illegal drug sales.

Jorge Colon-Ortiz (20 years) of Fall River, MA was arrested and charged with the following:

• Carrying/Possessing a non-large capacity firearm in public
• Carrying a Loaded Firearm in Public without a License
• Possession of Ammunition without an FID Card
• Possess to Distribute a Class C Substance
• Possess to Distribute a Class D Substance
• Firearm Law Violation with 3 prior violent or drug crime convictions

The 17-year-old Juvenile was arrested and charged with:
• Carrying/Possessing a non-large capacity firearm in public
• Carrying a Loaded Firearm in Public without a License
• Possession of Ammunition without an FID Card
• Possess to Distribute a Class D Substance

Colon-Ortiz and the Juvenile are due in court Wednesday, March 13, 2019 for arraignment on these charges.

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  1. Check facts

    March 13, 2019 at 1:18 pm

    This gun has not been manufactured since 1954 and does not have a “clip” it’s a magazine. This 54 year old firearm and its 7.62mm round is less powerful than modern 9mm and cannot penetrate armour any better. Good write up except the exaggeration of facts about the firearm. P.s. 7.62x25mm used in this firearm is quite different than the Ak47 7.62x39mm armour piercing round you speak of.

    • fallriverreporter

      March 13, 2019 at 5:39 pm

      The information we received was straight from the police. We didn’t just say so for a wow factor.

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