BY JULIE MANGANIS
---- — SALEM — A Salem man with a lengthy criminal record could be facing at least six years in prison, after a Salem Superior Court jury convicted him yesterday of possession of heroin with intent to distribute — while he was living over a day care center and just down the street from a playground.
Pedro Alix, 48, was arrested in March 2012, after Salem police got a search warrant for the second-floor apartment at 92 Congress St., where Alix was living with his mother.
Lead investigator Dennis Gaudet testified that police executing the search warrant found 10 grams of heroin in a bedroom safe, divided among six smaller bags, along with digital scales, a ledger and $960 in cash.
They also found numerous sandwich bags with the corners cut off. Police explained to the jury that drug dealers typically cut off the bottom corners of a bag, then use each corner to package the drug, twisting it closed, for resale.
Alix’s attorney, William O’Hare, denied that Alix was a dealer.
Alix was living on the second floor of the same building that houses Salem Community Child Care, though Curran stressed to jurors that there’s no indication the day care center was involved in any way in the drug business.
The building is also near Mary Jane Lee Park.
Because of that, Alix was also convicted of drug dealing within a school zone.
On Monday, Judge Howard Whitehead will be asked to decide whether this conviction counts as a “subsequent offense” of drug distribution, prior to sentencing.
Courts reporter Julie Manganis can be reached at 978-338-2521, via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @SNJulieManganis.