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Trial begins for Juneau man arrested on charges of selling heroin

Jose Perez also faces charges of interfering with official proceedings

Posted: July 27, 2011 - 9:21pm

Juneau Superior Court Judge Philip Pallenberg heard opening statements by Assistant District Attorney Angie Kemp and defense attorney Kevin Higgins Wednesday in the trial of a Juneau man arrested for allegedly selling heroin.

Jose Perez, 36, is facing one count of misconduct involving a controlled substance in the second degree, a class ‘A’ felony, and two counts of interference with official proceedings, class ‘B’ felonies, for threatening to use force or using force to improperly influence a witness or with intent to effect the outcome of an official proceeding.

Kemp described how metro drug officers were able to use a confidential informant who was willing to work and buy from other targets in the community.

That informant has a case still pending in court but has not been promised any leniency, Kemp said.

Kemp said the informant lead authorities to alleged dealer Joshua Walker, who led to another dealer, Perez. The result was a controlled buy at a trailer in Switzer Village where Perez stayed. That buy then led to the arrest of Perez and Walker.

Both were arraigned in Juneau District Court and taken to Lemon Creek Correctional Center. It is there were Perez is alleged to have assaulted Walker.

“He is caught on video, coming behind Mr. Walker and assaulting him,” Kemp said. “The investigator will tell you he punched him roughly 31 times.”

Higgins stated that for the most part, the state and the defense were in agreement about the evidence that will be presented. Higgins said the informant was working down previous, and as yet, uncharged issues with the state, and as part of that agreement the informant wore a wire and set up a drug deal under the supervision of the police with Walker, which led to Perez.

Higgins said what the jury will not hear is what goes on in the trailer. Higgins said Walker told police the drugs are in a tin between the cushions of the couch, an unusual place for a dealer to hide them.

“You don’t hear the deal inside go down on tape,” Higgins said. “You don’t have any surveillance, you only have Walker’s testimony.”

Higgins said the trailer was a flophouse for people to do their dope. Higgins said that the state never dusted the drug tin for prints and cannot put it in Perez’ hands, “because it never was.”

According to court documents, the Juneau Police Department arrested Perez on Jan. 5.

• Contact reporter Klas Stolpe at 523-2263 or at klas.stolpe@juneauempire.com.

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