Police arrest Lorain man believed to be 'upper level dealer' after string of deadly drug overdoses
Paul Kiska, newsnet5.com
8:24 PM, Nov 19, 2013
12:16 AM, Nov 20, 2013
LORAIN, Ohio - Working 16 hour days since a string of deadly drug overdoses in Lorain County, police said they made a major arrest during a search warrant conducted Tuesday.
Jason Vasquez, 35, was arrested on Fillmore Avenue in Lorain.
Police said a large amount of suspected fentanyl was found along with heroin and cocaine.
Police said Vasquez's 23-year-old girlfriend Sierra Calloway was also arrested on drug charges and the couple's 5-year-old daughter was walking around the house with drugs sitting out in the open.
The child was placed with relatives.
Lorain Police, Elyria Police and the Lorain County Drug Task Force have been working together on this case and the raid that was conducted Tuesday said Sgt. Tom Nimon with the Loran Police Department.
Police said Vasquez had at least half a dozen government issued flip phones meant for low income families. The hard to trace phones were ringing all at once during the raid and were probably for drug deals, Nimon said.
Police said that the large amount of drugs found leads them to believe Vasquez is an upper tier or "upper level dealer."
Tuesday's operation comes on the heels of several arrests made last week of street level dealers after at least three people died from overdoses on heroin or the powerful pain medicine fentanyl being sold as heroin.
The case could include charges of murder or manslaughter because of the deaths "We are trying to connect the dots and look at that angle with our prosecutors," said Lorain Police Detective Chris Colon.
Colon said Vasquez appeared to have a "carefree attitude" during the search warrant..
Lorain County 911 was also inundated with calls for help from drug users overdosing during a tense week.
A heroin summit is planned Thursday in Cleveland to discuss the heroin epidemic and State Attorney General Mike Dewine announced he's forming a heroin unit to look into the epidemic.
Six people died from suspected heroin overdoses in Cuyahoga County over the weekend and another person died from a suspected heroin overdose in Lorain Sunday.
Lorain police have saved several lives recently after people overdosed by using Narcan, a nasal spray that reverses the effects of opiate based drugs.