FITCHBURG -- Jose Oliver, the father of missing five-year-old Jeremiah Oliver, is free on bail after being arrested Monday in New Britain, Conn., after he allegedly tried to sell heroin to an undercover police officer.
According to the New Britain Herald, acting on information that Oliver was selling drugs, they set up a buy, Capt. Thomas Steck said.
Oliver, of 158 Oak St., arrived with three bundles, or 30 bags, of heroin and was arrested. Steck told the New Britain Herald Oliver was charged with possession of narcotics, possession of narcotics with intent to sell, and possession of narcotics with intent to sell within 1,500 feet of a school.
Fitchburg Police Lt. Kevin O'Brien said he was not aware of the arrest or how big the bags were, but he said the drugs could be worth at least a couple thousand dollars, maybe more.
The Oliver family issued a statement on the arrest, but declined to provide many additional details, saying those would come out in a scheduled court date Jan. 10 in Connecticut.
The statement, issued through family friend Miguel Fleitas, who has been helping organize searches, said Oliver is still adamant about custody of his other two children.
"Mr. Jose Oliver is adamant that he is a concerned and loving father that wants a resolution in finding his son Jeremiah. He will still move forward in seeking custody of his other children," the statement read.
Jeremiah Oliver was last seen by friends and family in September, but his disappearance was not reported to police until the middle of December after his older sister told someone at school she was being abused at home. Multiple vigils have been held to pray for the safe return of Jeremiah Oliver, and multiple searches have been conducted without any finding anything.
Elsa Oliver, the boy's mother, is still in custody after being arraigned on child-endangerment charges in Fitchburg District Court. She is still undergoing a detailed mental-health evaluation. Bail was set at $100,000 for Oliver, who must wear a GPS-monitoring device if she is released. However, even if bail was posted, she would remain in jail on a contempt of court charge out of the juvenile court system because she has still not told authorities where her son is.
She is charged with two counts of reckless endangerment of a child, two counts of accessory after fact of a felony (assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, and assault.
Her boyfriend, Alberto Sierra, is being held without bail for after being deemed too dangerous to be released by a Fitchburg District Court judge. He was arraigned on charges of two counts of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon (knife) and two counts of assault and battery on a child causing bodily injury.
Oliver is in the process of obtaining a lawyer to pursue custody of his other two children. The statement also said that the family believes the Fitchburg Police Department has not been keeping them up to speed on the investigation as it unfolds.
"They, as a family, are standing strong as a family wanting to find Jeremiah but they also want the police department to keep people updated on the facts of the case," the statement read.
Police Chief Robert DeMoura said the case of the disappearance is in the hands of the Worcester District Attorney and that's where any comments would come pertaining to the case.
"They have full jurisdiction over the case. Anytime they've (family) called us, we're talking to them but we don't give statements," he said. "I don't know if they expect to hear from us in conjunction from the DA but the DA has been keeping them updated."
The statement continued, saying the public should not be pass judgment on Oliver.
"They also want people to know they shouldn't be passing judgment on Jose Oliver but to pass judgment on Elsa, Alberto, and DCF, who are the responsible ones for the safety of Jeremiah," it read.
Oliver made bail and is at his Connecticut home. He has plans to come up next week to seek legal counsel on gaining custody.
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