Man Charged With Trafficking Fentanyl and Heroin

John A Townsend (Credit: Whitman, MA Police)

BROCKTON, MA (WBZ) -- Police have arrested a man suspected of dealing heroin and fentanyl potent enough to kill a thousand people.

John A. Townsend, 31, of Berkley, was arrested Friday with possession with intent do distribute. 

The arrest was made Friday during a traffic stop following a two month investigation into heroin and fentanyl activity in the western section of  the Town of Whitman

Police say they witnessed what appeared to be a drug transaction in a driveway of a home near the intersection of Auburn and School streets. 

Townsend was arraigned on Monday in Brockton District Court, and held on $2,500 bail and charged with trafficking Fentanyl. 

Cash, drugs, and paraphernalia seized during the investigation, which culminated in the arrest of Townsend on April Friday 6 (Credit: Whitman Police Department)

While prosecutors alleges Townsend had 15 grams, multiple cell phone and $5,000 in cash when he was pulled over, his mother tearfully told WBZ NewsRadio1030's Carl Stevens that he's an addict, not a criminal.

"He's my youngest son, he's...he's not a bad kid," said Townsend's mother Susan Townsend. "He works very hard, he's not a drug dealer. He's an addict, he's sick, he's very sick and he needs help," she said.

Prosecutors say that fifteen grams of pure Fentanyl is, in theory, enough to cause several thousand overdose deaths.

"We are dedicated, as a public safety agency, to helping those suffering from substance abuse disorders recovery and take back their lives, but this case serves as a reminder that police will continue to aggressively pursue dealers and traffickers who profit from human misery and death in our communities," Chief Benton said. 

WBZ NewsRadio1030's Carl Stevens reports.

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