Drone sightings led police to a drug arrest early this week.
A California couple was charged on Tuesday, Dec. 26, after they allegedly used a drone to deliver drugs to their customers. At the same time, a 9-year-old girl lived in their home filled with drugs, according to the Riverside Police Department.
Benjamin Baldassarre, 39 and Ashley Carroll, 31, both from the city of Riverside, were arrested and charged with: possession of controlled substances, possession of controlled substances for the purposes of sales, conspiracy to commit a crime, and child endangerment.
According to City News Service, Ashley pleaded not guilty to all charges during a court appearance on Tuesday. She was being held on a $100,000 bail. Benjamin’s arraignment was rescheduled to Wednesday.
Early in December, the department’s narcotics unit discovered a drone leaving the rear yard of a residence located in the 8700 block of Chesapeake Lane. They observed the drone flying to a nearby parking lot and dropping off a small package of drugs, which were taken by waiting customers.
It’s not clear what model of drone the suspect used.
The unit then executed a search warrant at the resident on Thursday, Dec. 21, where the police immediately noticed that the house posed a “high danger risk” to the officers and occupants living inside, according to police.
“Numerous used and uncapped hypodermic syringes were scattered throughout a bedroom along with unpackaged powders believed to contain fentanyl. Detectives also located methamphetamine and suspected LSD laced candies, as well as the drone used for the delivery of the illegal narcotics,” police said in a press release.
During the investigation, police also discovered a 9-year-old girl—who was not related to the suspects—living at the same residence. A vape pen containing marijuana was found in her bedroom, which authorities believe was left there by the two suspects.
The girl was later released to her biological mother after the Riverside Child Protective Services responded.
According to Fox News, both Baldassarre and Carroll were charged in a previous drug-related case that was still unresolved, according to court documents. In the past, Baldassarre was also convicted of driving under the influence of drugs and being under the influence of a controlled substance.