Mass. man arrested with fake ID in PelhamBy CHRIS GAROFOLO
Union Leader Correspondent
September 22. 2017 10:39PM
PELHAM — Police say a Massachusetts man with false identification was arrested Thursday as officers were investigating an alleged heroin dealer in town.
Reynaldo Mejia, 28, of 311 Water St., Lawrence, Mass., was arraigned Friday afternoon on two felony charges of falsifying physical evidence and four misdemeanor counts of operating a vehicle without a valid license, disobeying an officer, possession of a false ID and driver’s license prohibitions. He was released on $10,000 cash-only bail, according to documents from Hillsborough County Superior Court South.
Mejia, who previously lived in Manchester, was arrested following the investigation, which officers with the Pelham Police Department say started when they received information on Sept. 13 that a heroin dealer from Lawrence was selling in town.
Police say the individual, who went by “Joel” and was known as “Mejia Mejia” on Facebook, was operating a white 2016 Kia Soul with Massachusetts plates.
On Sept. 14, officers observed the vehicle turn onto Nashua Road with a bearded, heavy-set Hispanic male operating the Kia. Police determined the driver was the same man that officers reported on the “Mejia Mejia” Facebook page and began to follow the Kia in an undercover vehicle.
Police ran the plates and found it was a short-term rental often used in drug-related crimes, said Bruce J. Vieira Jr., a patrolman with the Pelham Police Department, in an affidavit filed with the court.
“At this point based on the information I received prior to this date I was confident that this was the vehicle and that was the subject in question,” Vieira wrote. “I observed the vehicle to then take a right into the driveway of a (Mammoth Road property) which is a known residence of heroin users. I conducted surveillance for approximately 5 minutes then observed the white Kia Soul exit the driveway and head south on Mammoth Road, still being operated by the Hispanic male.”
As the vehicle passed by police, officers observed the driver on his cellphone and conducted a traffic stop.
Police found a Massachusetts driver’s license in the man’s wallet and he claimed to be the man on the license, according to court documents. Police later determined Mejia’s identity and confirmed that information with the Lowell, Mass., Police Department.
Pelham officers and members of the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Department street crimes unit arrested Mejia on Thursday without incident after he was located on Marsh Road. Mejia later told police he purchased the falsified driver’s license for $1,200 on the black market in Puerto Rico.
As of Friday, he had not been charged with any drug-related offenses stemming from the Pelham police heroin investigation.
Police say Immigration Customs Enforcement was also contacted and responded to the Pelham station and are assisting with the investigation.