A Harrisburg man faces drug charges after police say a routine traffic stop on the Pennsylvania Turnpike turned into a large-scale heroin bust.
According to court documents, Jose Morales-Morell, 31, was pulled over at mile marker 316 of the turnpike on December 17 when he was clocked traveling 77 mph in a 65 mph zone. The stop occurred at 3:43 a.m.
The state trooper who initiated the stop said he immediately recognized signs of criminal activity in the car, which was, in addition to Morales-Morell, peopled by passengers Nelson Morales-Morell and Luis Ledee-Rodriguez.
The officer asked to search the vehicle, and Morales-Morell said “no.” A K9 unit was dispatched to the scene, while Ledee-Rodriguez was taken away by police for an outstanding warrant in Harrisburg. Both Morales-Morells opted to leave the scene while the K9 was en route.
The dog, once on the scene, indicated that she smelled either cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine, or marijuana. The vehicle was then towed to the state police’s Embreeville barracks, where it was searched and 94 bricks of heroin were discovered in a plastic bag in the trunk.
Jose Morales-Morell was charged with possession of narcotics with intent to deliver, conspiracy to deliver narcotics, and possession of drug paraphernalia. He faces preliminary hearing before Judge Michaels on January 17.