LACONIA — Police from Swansea, Mass. arrested a man who had skipped out on appearing in Belknap County Superior Court after being indicted by a grand jury for multiple counts of selling drugs in the area.
Sheriff Craig Wiggin said Andre Garcia, 23, whose last known address was in Dorchester, was a passenger in a car that police had stopped.
Paperwork obtained from the Belknap County Superior Court showed Garcia was indicted for three separate counts of possession of heroin, cocaine, and crack cocaine with the intent to distribute the drugs in Tilton on March 8, 2012. He was also indicted for possession of marijuana in Tilton.
On April 20, 2012, Garcia was indicted for the special felony of possession of more than one gram of heroin with the intent to distribute it in Laconia. If convicted, he could serve up to 20 years in prison and pay a $300,000 fine.
He was scheduled for court appearances on October 17, 2012 and December 17, 2012 on each separate charge and failed to appear for either. Warrants in each case were filed.
Det. Sgt. Matt Dawson said Tilton Police arrested Garcia in January of 2012 after a few days of surveillance while he was staying at a local motel. Dawson said Garcia allegedly came once or twice a month to the area and sold various drugs from his hotel room.
He said police and witnesses observed him allegedly staying in his room most of the time, paying in cash for the hotel room and refusing all room service. Dawson said police saw him meeting people briefly in the parking lot and witnesses told police he would occasionally have women come to his room for a brief period of time.
Dawson said Tilton Police detectives worked with Laconia Police detectives to apprehend Garcia.
When he failed to appear for his second court date — after two delays, allegedly for a brain aneurism and his grandmother's funeral, he was added to the fugitive from justice list which is disseminated to the U.S. Marshal's Service of which Belknap County is a participant. In April of 2013 he was named the fugitive of the week.
Wiggin said he was being held in the Bristol County (Massachusetts) Jail pending his appearance in the Fall River District Court for a fugitive from justice charge.