Meth and marijuana seized in two separate busts Tuesday

by F.T. Norton

Appeal Staff Writer

A Carson City man was jailed Tuesday for allegedly possessing nearly 13 pounds of marijuana and 150 grams of methamphetamine, after a sharp-eyed neighbor spotted what he believed to be a drug deal going down on Park Street.

Carson City Sheriff's Deputy James Boggan said officers were called to 417 E. Park St. on the report of a man in a white car selling drugs. When police arrived, they found Eligio Gomez-Bustamante, 40, standing outside the white car.

Boggan said Gomez-Bustamante allowed officers to search his vehicle and nothing was found. But when police searched Gomez-Bustamante's apartment there, Deputy Sal Acosta located a suitcase filled with marijuana buds stored in gallon Ziploc freezer bags in a closet. Boggan said there were 16 bags all together, weighing a total of 12.79 pounds.

Boggan said methamphetamine was found in cupboards and hidden inside oatmeal containers

As police searched his apartment, Gomez-Bustamante fled. They located him an hour later at a home on Tiger Drive.

Gomez-Bustamante was booked on suspicion of possession of meth, possession of more than an ounce of marijuana and possession with intent to sell.

The street value of the marijuana is estimated at $35,000, the meth estimated at $15,000.

Also on Tuesday, Carson City deputies were called out to the Downtowner Motor Inn on a report of a stolen vehicle in the lot and a tenant in Room 25 doing meth.

Deputy Dan Ochsenschlager said as he approached the room, tenant Michael Hughes, 19, emerged.

"As soon as he saw me he said, 'You got me. Here's my stuff,'" the deputy said. Hughes allegedly handed over a tin holding bundled packets of meth. He is being held on suspicion of felony possession of methamphetamine for sale, possession of a dangerous weapon and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Officers also located a dark blue Chevy Lumina reported stolen by Curtis Peterson, 40, on Monday.

Peterson was found in Room 12 of the Downtowner, also allegedly in possession of methamphetamine, said Deputy Charles Stetler.

He was booked on suspicion of felony possession of methamphetamine, possession of drug paraphernalia, and an alternative sentencing violation.

Stetler said the Downtowner manager has been very cooperative with police since the motel reopened for business in August after being closed for two years.

"The manager here has been more than helpful," said Stetler. "He evicts everyone (arrested) on the spot."

Deputy Hatley said: "He is always helping us look out for people."

Manager Rick Logone said he knows the motel's reputation is a rough one, but he is doing everything possible to turn it around.

"We are working with these sheriff's and we are trying very hard to keep this place clean," he said. "I'm not going to tolerate this crap."

Logone said the parking lot has a state-of-the-art surveillance system and he is willing to provide police with anything they need.

"My rule is zero tolerance, period. The more presence the sheriff is out here, maybe the word will get out and people will get it through their heads that we are not going to put up with it," he said.

• Contact reporter F.T. Norton at ftnorton@nevadaappeal.com or 881-1213.

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