16 Arrested On Drug Charges After Raid On Reading House, Undercover Operation

Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United Stat...

Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United States with township and municipal boundaries (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Sixteen people were arrested on drug-related charges Wednesday after a search warrant was executed and, in another operation, undercover officers posed as drug dealers.

According to authorities:

City officers obtained the warrant for a house in the 800 block of Muhlenberg Street after receiving complaints about drug sales.

Officers searched the house about 1 p.m. and recovered drug paraphernalia, an electronic surveillance system, money, a personnel schedule and a drug ledger.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article/20140117/NEWS/301179933#.UtlvdfQo6c8

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Spate Of Taxi And Food-Delivery Robberies Leads To Caution And Anxiety In Reading

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Berks County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Berks County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

You can forgive taxi drivers and food-delivery drivers if they’re a bit jumpy of late.

Five drivers, including two cabbies and three food-delivery workers, have been robbed in the city over a one-week span through Thursday night, according to Reading police.

They were all approached after they pulled up to a specific address to pick up a fare or deliver food at night, police said.

Both cab drivers and a food delivery driver were robbed in the 1200 block of Moss Street.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article/20140111/NEWS/301119955#.UtFqZPRDsxI

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Conference Generates Ideas For Tackling Poverty In Reading

, U.S. Congressman (R-Pennsylvania, 1997-present)

, U.S. Congressman (R-Pennsylvania, 1997-present) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Fatherless families, a lack of jobs and school dropout rates contribute to poverty and local economic conditions, U.S. Rep. Joseph R. Pitts said Monday.

“Families with fathers and mothers are the best anti-poverty program,” said the Chester County Republican, whose district includes Reading. “Saying these simple things can land you in all kinds of trouble.”

He was speaking at a conference on economic inequality that he organized at Reading Area Community College.

In an interview afterward, Pitts listed some points raised during the four-hour event that he will pursue.

“We will come up with some projects,” Pitts said.

While some of the 75 political, business and nonprofit leaders who participated agreed with Pitts’ points, several made their own arguments for improving the economy in Reading, where the 2012 poverty rate of 40.5 percent made it the second most impoverished city in the country behind Detroit.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article/20131210/NEWS/312109974/1052#.UqeN0fRDsxI

18 From Berks Arrested, 8 More Sought On Drug Trafficking Charges

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Berks County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Berks County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Eighteen mid- to low-level drug dealers were arrested Wednesday during a roundup by detectives from the district attorney’s drug task force, Reading police and the sheriff’s department.  In addition to those arrested, detectives have arrest warrants for eight others.

The arrests culminated a nearly yearlong investigation that began with complaints from residents and tips from informants, authorities said.

The suspects sold small amounts of heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine and marijuana to undercover detectives, authorities said.

Undercover detectives arranged transactions with the dealers for amounts ranging from $50 to $2,870 between January and this week, County Chief Detective Michael J. Gombar said.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article/20131205/NEWS/312059917#.UqCzmLB3uM8

Suspect In Fatal Stabbing In Reading Still At Large

Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United Stat...

Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United States with township and municipal boundaries (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A Reading man accused of breaking into a city home and fatally stabbing an acquaintance while women and children were there remained at large Monday.

Julio A. Ortiz-Lugo, 30, is charged with first-, second, and third-degree murder, burglary and related counts in the slaying of Juan C. Lopez-Bonilla, 36, on Sunday morning in the 500 block of Minor Street.

Ortiz-Lugo, whose last-known address was in the 1100 block of Franklin Street, might not be easy to find, police said.

In addition to the new arrest warrant, police said there was an outstanding bench warrant for Ortiz-Lugo in a 2012 theft and weapons case in Reading.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=519494

Reading Police Searching For City Resident In Fatal Stabbing After Break-In

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Berks County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Berks County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A Reading man broke into a city home and stabbed an acquaintance to death Sunday morning, police said.

The suspect remained at large late Sunday.

Also in the home at the time were two women, one of whom witnessed the stabbing, and several children, police said.

Julio A. Ortiz-Lugo, 30, entered the home in the 500 block of Minor Street through a second-floor bathroom window shortly before 7, said Sgt. John M. Solecki of the criminal investigations division.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=519415

Former Reading Police Official To Head Norristown Department

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Montgomery County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Editor’s note:  It appears Norristown had its act together when it came to finding the most qualified candidate for their new police chief.   Notice they didn’t just move up the next guy in line.  Making these kinds of smart hiring decisions will help Norristown revitalize, making it safer for residents and more attractive to development.

Mark E. Talbot Sr., Reading’s former deputy police chief who left in 2011 to lead a state bureau, has been appointed police chief in Norristown, the seat of Montgomery County.

After an eight-month search, borough council appointed Talbot, 43, on Wednesday.

He’ll be sworn in Nov. 19 and will be paid $117,000.

“It’s a great place for me to be,” Talbot said Thursday of Norristown. “They have some challenges that I can be a part of making a whole lot better.”

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=518524

Police Arrest Four In Reading As Part Of Synthetic Pot Investigation

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Berks County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Berks County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Reading police and Berks County detectives Thursday morning raided a corner grocery store and several other locations as part of an investigation of a large synthetic marijuana manufacturing and distribution operation based in the city.

Four individuals – Brandon Miranda, 24, Maria Garcia-Ortiz, 25, Isuain Alvarado-Rosado, 34, and Orlando Alvarado-Rosado, 32 – were charged with felony drug charges and taken into custody. Their addresses were not immediately available. Jesus Medina, 32, of the 2200 block of Hampden Boulevard, and Eric Cintron, 33, of the 8000 block of Allentown Pike were also charged but remained at large.

Investigators seized a large amount of K2, the common name for synthetic pot, and the chemicals to make the hallucinogenic drug, said Lt. Jeffrey Parr, acting commander of the city police criminal investigations division. The estimated street value of the K2 seized is about $100,000.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=517263

Reading Taps New Technology To Predict And Prevent Crime

Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United Stat...

Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United States with township and municipal boundaries (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It won’t replace city police officers’ intuition. It’s several techno-steps beyond the crime-mapping Reading has been doing for 30 years. It’s not criminal profiling.

And it’s not psychic.

But PredPol claims its software technology can tell police when and where the next crimes are likely to occur, within a few blocks.

“We are always seeking ways to improve our ability to fight crime in our city – in this case, preventing it before it happens,” Mayor Vaughn D. Spencer said at a press conference Thursday. “This technology is a force multiplier.”

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=516734

3 Reading Residents Sold Heroin On Orange Street, Police Say

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Berks County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Berks County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Three Reading residents were arrested Friday after an undercover investigation revealed they sold heroin in the 400 block of Orange Street, according to Berks County detectives.

Detectives with the district attorney’s drug task force arrested Jose Antonio Perez-Guevarez, 32; Pablo Santiago-Santiago, 54; and Melinda Marrero, 39, all of the 400 block of Orange Street.

They were charged with possession of heroin with the intent to deliver and other related charges. If convicted, the three suspects face at least two years for dealing illegal drugs in a school zone.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=516231

Police Arrest Reading Man Charged With Attempted Homicide

Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United Stat...

Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United States with township and municipal boundaries (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A Reading man charged with attempted homicide in the May shooting of another man has been arrested.

Salvador Rivera, 43, of the 1600 block of Moss Street was committed to Berks County Prison in lieu of $200,000 bail after arraignment early Saturday before Senior District Judge Paul J. Hadzick in Reading Central Court.

He also was charged with aggravated assault, reckless endangerment and possessing an instrument of crime.

Reading police obtained a warrant for Rivera on May 28, the day of the shooting, but he remained at large until Friday. Arrest details were unavailable.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=513848

Two Arrested In Fatal Reading Shooting

A 1947 topographic map of the Reading, Pennsyl...

A 1947 topographic map of the Reading, Pennsylvania area. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Reading police captured a pair of suspects more than 12 hours apart in the fatal shooting last week of a man investigators said they planned to rob.

Leonardo J. Mojica-Carrion, 20, of the 1100 block of North Ninth Street was apprehended late Tuesday morning at Ninth and Robeson streets.

On Monday evening, detectives arrested Estiben Manso, 16, also of the 1100 block of North Ninth Street, following a chase through parts of the city.

Detectives said he ran from them when they spotted him in the 200 block of North Ninth Street. He was captured in the 800 block of Green Street.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=514019

Man Shot Multiple Times In Reading

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Berks County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Berks County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A man was shot multiple times Friday night in a parking lot on a side street off Ninth and Douglass streets, city police said.

Patrol division Lt. Brian Cole said the victim was shot in the torso about 9:30 p.m.

The victim, whom police did not identify, was transported to Reading Hospital by paramedics with the city fire department.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=513417

Man Ambushed, Stabbed Ex-Girlfriend, Reading Police Say

Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United Stat...

Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United States with township and municipal boundaries (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Reading police are looking for a man they say stabbed and repeatedly slashed his estranged girlfriend in her home while her two young children were there.

Bladimir Delvalle, 32, whose last known address is the 1000 block of Locust Street, was charged with attempted murder and related charges in the assault of the 33-year-old woman Monday night in the 1300 block of Perkiomen Avenue.

Senior District Judge Gloria W. Stitzel signed an arrest warrant for Delvalle early Tuesday in Reading Central Court. He remained at large Tuesday.

The woman suffered several cuts on her face, a deep cut to her left forearm, a cut on her right knee and shallow puncture wounds on her back, investigators said.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=505984

Witness Faces Murder Suspect In Berks County Courtroom

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Berks County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Berks County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

A witness to the shooting of two men, one fatally, in Reading this summer faced the defendant during a hearing Wednesday, two months after chasing him into an alley and fighting with him until police arrived.

Witness Jermaine Miles said he was talking with two friends near his car on Elm Street at North Eighth Street about 2:10 a.m. on July 7 when he heard a barrage of gunfire.  He said he saw the muzzle of a pistol flashing, then saw the gunman, Vincent L. Minto, run into an alley between Elm and Buttonwood streets.

Miles said he got into his car and drove the wrong way up Eighth Street to Buttonwood Street to head off Minto in the opposite end of the alley.  Miles said he fired a shot into the air from his car, then got out, fired another warning shot and yelled, “Police, stop.”

Startled, Minto fell in the alley, losing grip of the gun, Miles said.  He said he pounced on Minto, who during the struggle said, “A long time ago your friends should be died (sic).”

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=506170

Reading Police Seek Suspect In Stabbing

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Berks County

Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Berks County (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Reading police are looking for a man they say stabbed and repeatedly slashed his estranged girlfriend in her home while her two young children were there.

Bladimir Delvalle, 32, whose last known address is the 1000 block of Locust Street, was charged with attempted murder and related charges in the assault of the 33-year-old woman Monday night in the 1300 block of Perkiomen Avenue.

Senior District Judge Gloria W. Stitzel signed an arrest warrant for Velvalle early Tuesday in Reading Central Court, and he remained at large Tuesday afternoon.

The woman suffered several cuts on her face, a deep cut to her left forearm, a cut on her right knee and shallow puncture wounds on her back, investigators said.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=505984

Two Charged In Slaying Of Birdsboro Man

A 1947 topographic map of the Reading, Pennsyl...

A 1947 topographic map of the Reading, Pennsylvania area. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Reading police obtained arrest warrants for two men in the shooting death of a Birdsboro man whose body was found in an alley last month.

Police identified Johnnie L. Nelson, 26, of the 800 block of North Fifth Street, and Eric Harding, 23, of the first block of Gouglersville Road, Cumru Township, as suspects in the death of Darryl A. Jones, 26.

Both are already in Berks County Prison for parole violations.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=505236

Reading Police Pulled From The Citadel

Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United Stat...

Map of Berks County, Pennsylvania, United States Public School Districts (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

City police officers have been pulled from their stations at the Reading Citadel intermediate high school while the school district figures out how it’s going to come up with the money to pay for them, district officials said Wednesday.

“We don’t have coverage in the building,” school board President Pierre V. Cooper told fellow board members at the end of their meeting.

“The police are circling and in the area, and they can be there at a moment’s notice,” Cooper said.  “But they are not in the building.”

The two officers stationed at the Citadel, who also serve the high school, were at the school for the first day but were reassigned to regular city patrols later in the week, Dr. Carlinda Purcell, superintendent, said after the meeting.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=505051

Suspect Sought In Death Of Reading Man

A 1947 topographic map of the Reading, Pennsyl...

A 1947 topographic map of the Reading, Pennsylvania area. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

An arrest warrant has been issued for a suspect in the death of a man whose bullet-riddled body was found in June outside a Reading storage unit.

Ruderick Quitcon-Vazquez, 25, formerly of the 600 block of Schuylkill Avenue, is wanted in the death of Yamil Lozado-Ocasio, 36, of the same block, city police said.

The suspect remains at large, said Sgt. John M. Solecki of the criminal investigations division.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=504586

Vehicle Thefts In Reading At 10-Year Low

A decade after vehicle thefts became an epidemic in Reading, police say the crime is on a pace to reach a 10-year low.

As of the end of July, 170 vehicles had been stolen in the city this year, compared to 246 at the same point last year, said Officer Keith Merkel, one of three city policemen assigned full time to a state police regional auto theft task force.

But Merkel isn’t ready to pop champagne corks. He noted August and September were the busiest months for vehicle thefts in the city last year.

While auto thefts have declined locally and nationally in recent years, car thefts actually spiked in Reading in 2012.

Read more: http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=504178