Willimantic Police Seize Heroin, Crack Cocaine from Car Near Windham Schools

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    A K-9 unit discovered heroin, crack cocaine and marijuana in a blue sedan the officer stopped on Valley Street in Willimantic within a mile or so from four Windham public schools

    Police arrested driver Herman Houser, 50, of Groton, last Friday on multiple charges including possession of narcotics with intent to sell within 1,500 feet of a school zone. The arrest happened less than a quarter-mile from Windham Early Childhood Center and three to four minutes by car from W.B. Sweeney School and Natchaug School elementary schools and Windham Middle School in Willimantic, according to distance calculations on Google Maps.

    The officer handling Sasa, a Willimantic police dog trained to detect narcotics, found 16 bags of heroin and four bags of crack cocaine on Houser after he tried to hide something in his pockets and pants waistline, police said. The officer also discovered a pill bottle containing seven grams of heroin, four grams of crack cocaine and several small bags of marijuana in the car, according to a news release from the department.

    Police seized the drugs and $200 in cash.

    The officer originally stopped Houser's car after watching him commit several driving violations near the intersection with Milk Street, police said.

    Police charged Houser, who is on parole on unrelated charges, with possession of narcotics, possession of narcotics with intent to sell within 1,500 feet of a school zone and sale of certain illegal drugs.

    Police held him on a $200,000 bond. He appeared in Danielson Superior Court on Monday and a judge is awaiting his plea. He is scheduled to appear in court again on June 23.

    Houser has six convictions in Connecticut, according to the state judicial website. The latest was a first-degree forgery charge after he tried to get change at Five Guys Burger and Fries in Stonington for a counterfeit $20.

    Willimantic police continue to investigate narcotics-related activity in the city and ask anyone with information to contact the department at 860-465-3135.