HACKENSACK, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — A convicted child murdered and rapist on permanent parole was among the 160 suspected drug dealers arrested in the largest narcotics crackdown in Hackensack history, and investigators have been digging into his past in order to crack a number of cold cases.
As CBS 2’s Christine Sloan reported, the suspects were paraded in and out of court Wednesday.
Suspect Charles T. Williams, also known as Charles Moore and “Old School,” was busted for allegedly selling heroin and oxycodone to undercover detectives near a park behind his apartment on Sussex Street in Hackensack, N.J.
Police said Williams is well known to them.
Williams, 62, is on lifetime parole for the 1969 rapes and murders of two boys — ages 13 and 14 — in Virginia and was also convicted of raping several young boys around New Jersey, police said. Police believe Williams may be connected to cold case killings of children, according to published reports.
“I knew he lived there – I saw him a couple of times coming in and out of the building,” said Williams’ neighbor, David Harris.
Indeed, Williams has a long and ghastly rap sheet. In the 1970s, he was convicted of raping several boys in three New Jersey counties – including Bergen.
In 1974, he was arrested and convicted in the 1969 murders in Virginia.
And most recently, on Feb. 6 of this year, he was accused of stabbing a 24-year-old man.
Sloan asked Hackensack Police Director Michael Mordaga how someone like Williams could be out on parole.
“That’s always the question when we catch somebody like this,” he answered. “Unfortunately, this happens every day. People like that get out every day. And everybody always has a question as, how did this person get out? And that’s just the way the system works. That has nothing to do with the police.”
CBS 2 reached out to the New Jersey county officials who would have been involved in such a decision, but has not heard back.
Williams’ attorney did not mention his clients past. But he told the judge his client is not a drug dealer, but a family man who works in a furniture store.
“He’s been working there for approximately 20 years,” the attorney told the judge. “He has three children, and I believe five, six grandchildren.”
CBS 2 knocked on Williams’ apartment door, but no one answered.
Investigators said they are looking at other cold cases in Bergen County to see if he could be connected to them.
“I always found it kind of disturbing, because I’ve lived here for a while; he’s been out for a while,” Harris said. “I was younger when he got out too.”
Williams asked the judge if his bail could be reduced. The judge said no and remanded back to jail.
Police on Wednesday said they were piecing together a timeline of Williams’ convictions to see when he was out of prison. That is how they say they will be able to determine what cold cases to look into.
Wider Drug Bust Followed Undercover Operation
Hackensack police announced the results of their massive narcotics crackdown on Tuesday. The sweep involved over 160 drug dealers in a seven-month undercover operation, police said.
Officers have made undercover purchases of other drugs, including Oxycodone, Roxycodine, heroin, crack cocaine, powder cocaine, and marijuana, police said.
They have also made undercover buys of “pink crack” or “strawberry crack,” which users have said gives them a greater high and may actually be a mixture of crack and methamphetamine, police said. They have also marijuana dipped in embalming fluid – known on the street as “WET” – and several handguns.
Investigators used sheriff’s officers from Bergen County who were unknown to drug dealers on the street.
Among those being investigated were Richard Shoop, the 20-year-old Teaneck man who fatally shot himself inside the Garden State Plaza mall in November. Ten days before he randomly fired shots in the mall and then killed himself with an AK-47, he was caught by undercover detectives selling ecstasy on the street, police said. He told friends he though police were honing in on him, investigators said.
During the broader operation, cops made undercover purchases of drugs such as Oxycodone, Roxycodine, heroin, crack cocaine, powder cocaine and marijuana, police said. They have also made undercover buys of “pink crack” or “strawberry crack,” which users have said gives them a greater high and may actually be a mixture of crack and methamphetamine, police said. Police also recovered marijuana dipped in embalming fluid — known on the street as “WET” — and several handguns.
Another sex offender — James Rogers, of Hackensack — got busted for allegedly selling oxycodone to an undercover officer. He was convicted in 2004 of aggravated sexual assault for the rape of a developmentally disabled male victim, police said.
Another defendant, former emergency medical technician Christian Alameda, is also charged with distributing cocaine and Molly — while wearing an EMT uniform. He said he was a certified EMT, but has not worked as one for more than a year, police said.
Other defendants were caught dealing drugs with children in their cars or in their arms, police said.
Jeremy Castillo was allegedly caught dealing drugs in a high-rise apartment on Prospect Avenue in Hackensack, leaving his 10-month-old daughter in his car concealed under a Tempur-Pedic pillow, police said. He was hit with drug charges and endangering the welfare of a child.
Patricia “Mother Pat” Thompson and her daughter, Shannon Thompson, were both arrested after allegedly selling drugs in Union Street Park. An undercover officer bought oxycodone from the mother and daughter, and said Pat Thompson was keeping the drugs in her bra, police said.
Shannon Thompson sat nearby with a small child identified as her 4-year-old daughter, police said.
Two more defendants, Cleon Shoemaker and Latoya McCarroll, are accused of selling “WET” marijuana — and an undercover officer allegedly bought drugs from McCarroll while she held a baby in her arms, police said.
Defendant Nahdir Gonzalez also allegedly sold drugs to an undercover officer while holding his infant son in his arms near Memorial Park on Main Street in Hackensack, police said.
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