Worcester, MA (June 28, 2013) - On Thursday, June 27, 2013 at approximately 8:10 PM, members of the Worcester Police Vice Squad were working undercover in the Green Street area. At this time, the undercover officers observed a female on a pay phone. The female, later identified as Ashley Rucci, 25-years-old of 50 Stone School Road, Sutton, was on the phone for a short period. Ms. Rucci then entered the driver’s side of a Toyota Celica and drive off. The undercover officers decided to follow the Toyota.
The vehicle was followed to Beacon Street where the vehicle stopped to the side of the road. The officers positioned themselves in an area where they could conduct surveillance on Ms. Rucci. The Toyota drove off and went around the block and came back and parked at the original spot. As soon as Ms. Rucci returned, a Hispanic male, thin build and wearing a yellow shirt walked up to Ms. Rucci’s vehicle. The male was later identified as Rene Cordero, 34-years-old of 111 Beacon Street. The officers noticed that when Mr. Cordero was approaching the Rucci vehicle he was looking around in all directions and appeared nervous. When Cordero reached the vehicle he placed his hand to his mouth and spit an object into his hand. Mr. Cordero then reached his hand with the item into the Rucci vehicle. Mr. Cordero placed his hand back into his pocket and walked away. At this time, Ms. Rucci drove off heading down Beacon Street towards Hammond Street.
The undercover officers believed that they had just witnessed a street level drug transaction. The undercover officer radioed for assistance and asked for a marked police vehicle to stop and hold Mr. Codero. However, he had evaded police and could not be located.
Meanwhile, the undercover officers followed the Rucci vehicle to the Gulf Gas Station located on Southbridge Street. Officers approached the vehicle. Rucci was startled as she realized police were approaching her and attempted to conceal an item that was in her hand. The officers quickly grabbed her hands and discovered a small bag of heroin. Ms. Rucci was placed under arrest and charged with Possession of Class A substance and Conspiracy to Violate Controlled Substance Laws.
The officers used Ms. Rucci’s phone that was recovered and called the suspected drug dealers. The officers spoke with a male and made arrangements to meet for a drug purchase. The deal was to be meet back at the same location. Shortly after, the undercover officers arrived back to Beacon Street. A male identified as Douglas Valdez arrived and approached the officers. Mr. Valdez leaned into the window and produced a knotted bag of heroin out of his mouth and handed it to the officer. As the Mr. Valdez walked away officers nearby stopped and arrested him.
Mr. Valdez, 22-years-old of 111 Beacon Street was charged with Distribution of Class A Substance, Trafficking Heroin and Conspiracy to Violate Controlled Substance laws. Mr. Valdez also had an outstanding arrest warrant for motor vehicle offenses.
Officers went to 111 Beacon Street and knocked on the door. The door was answered by Mr. Cordero, the man seen selling Ms. Rucci the heroin earlier.
Mr. Cordero was placed under arrest and charged with Possession of Class A with the Intent to Distribute, Distribution of Class A Substance, Trafficking in Heroin and conspiracy to Violate Controlled Substance laws. Mr. Cordero also had an outstanding arrest warrant for motor vehicle offenses. Mr. Cordero was searched and police discovered 9 small bags of heroin on his person.
The apartment was secured as the vice officers obtained a search warrant. On 06/28/2013 at approximately 1:30 AM, the officers executed the search and discovered $1,186 in cash, 52 grams of heroin, 299 individually packaged ½ grams of heroin, and a hiding device containing an additional 31 individually packed ½ grams of heroin, packaging materials, a digital scale and other drug paraphernalia.
All three individuals are to be arraigned today at the Worcester County District Courthouse.