Eventually, the car stopped, and Dellaria drew his pistol. He ordered the suspects to place their hands in the air and for the driver to throw the keys out the window. Dellaria then called the station for additional units as he prepared to arrest them. Arriving at the scene were Amesbury police officer Matthew Cunningham, Sgt. William Scholtz, state Trooper Dan Ciardiello from the Newbury barracks and Salisbury Sgt. Robert Roy.
Both passengers were removed from the vehicle and handcuffed. According to the report, police quickly spotted a baseball bat where Cowhig was sitting, along with two knives inside his pocket. Police also found a small red bag containing used and fresh syringes, numerous pieces of cotton, small square-inch plastic baggies, sandwich baggies, a gray digital scale and a spoon with thick brown residue still cooked to it.
Inside the center console police found a prescription pill bottle with the label ripped off. Suspecting one of the two men had thrown something out of the car, Dellaria asked Ciardiello to check a nearby section of woods. Minutes later, Ciardiello found a clear plastic bag containing what turned out to be 2.6 grams of heroin with a street value of $400, according to court records.
Following their arrest and transport to the Salisbury police station, Cowhig told police he took heroin to combat chronic pain related to an old work injury.
“He told me he purchased the heroin yesterday in Lawrence and paid $500 for it. He told me he uses only once daily,” Dellaria wrote in his report.
In a separate interview, Willis told police that Cowhig purchases his heroin from a Salisbury source, and it is delivered to his residence daily, contradicting Cowhig’s statement.