Cocaine delivery bust leads to deferred sentence
December 19, 2019
Aaron Gonzales of Colorado has been placed on probation for a felony charge of possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver following an incident in which he and another man were caught with cocaine on the interstate.
On March 30, a Sheriff’s Office Deputy was patrolling I-90 when he observed a red SUV with Colorado plates traveling at 97 mph and initiated a traffic stop. The deputy made contact with two males in the front seats; while speaking to the driver, passenger Aaron Gonzales began speaking for him.
The deputy reports that the SUV was a rental, but neither man had leased it. Gonzales allegedly stated his “friend” had leased it for him but did not have a copy of the contract.
The other man allegedly claimed the two men were traveling from Denver to Bismarck, ND, to see a friend of Gonzales’, though he did not know his name. According to the deputy’s affidavit, the two had left Denver around noon, taking turns to drive in approximately two-hour cycles. The driver allegedly claimed he has known Gonzales “for a bit” and had worked a little with him.
The driver claimed Gonzales asked him along to help with the driving. When asked how long the pair would be in Bismarck, the driver allegedly stated until Sunday and later said until Thursday or Friday.
Dispatch advised the deputy that both individuals had revoked driver’s licenses. A Wyoming Highway Patrol trooper arrived on scene and watched the driver while the deputy spoke with Gonzales.
According to the affidavit, Gonzales claimed he was heading to North Dakota to visit a friend and take him a stroller and baby seat, as well as help him do some jobs with flooring.
The driver gave consent for the vehicle to be searched. In the driver door storage area, the deputy allegedly observed a plastic container consistent with marijuana from a dispensary; inside, he observed a green leafy bud. In the rear compartment, the deputy located a paper sack with a receipt for marijuana. He also found a gift sack, inside of which was a vacuum-sealed package containing a white substance and a zip lock bag.
Gonzales denied knowledge of the marijuana and claimed the gift bag was for his friend in North Dakota along with the stroller and car seat, all of which had been given to him by another friend.
Gonzales was placed under arrest. The driver allegedly continued to deny knowledge of the drugs and told the deputy Gonzales had given him $100 and promised him another $200 on arrival.
The driver stated he knew it was a “business” trip for Gonzales but had not asked any questions. A search of the driver’s phone revealed several messages from Gonzales about trips to North Dakota. In one, Gonzales allegedly states he has made the trip several times without issue and offers $300 to the first person who will commit to taking the trip.
The deputy interviewed Gonzales, who allegedly said he needed to make a phone call before deciding whether to provide information about who he was delivering for.
Gonzales requested to speak with the deputy again at 6:30 a.m. the next day. According to the deputy’s affidavit, he stated he had not made his phone call but had decided it would be better to come clean.
Gonzales allegedly admitted to three prior trips carrying product from Colorado to North Dakota; he does not know what the product is but it is always provided in a gift bag.
The seized items were weighed at the Sheriff’s Office. The white substance in the vacuum-sealed package weighed 560 g with packaging and the marijuana from the driver door weighed 0.48 oz.
Testing of the white substance later revealed it to be cocaine.
Gonzales faced felony charges of possession of cocaine; possession with intent to deliver; conspiracy to possess a controlled substance with intent to deliver; conspiracy to possess cocaine. He also faced misdemeanor charges of possession of marijuana; possession with intent to deliver; conspiracy to possess a controlled substance with intent to deliver; conspiracy to possess a controlled substance.
According to the terms of a plea agreement, Gonzales was given a deferred sentence pending completion of 36 months of supervised probation.