Men face judge after traffic stop, synthetic pot bust

From left to right in foreground, Corwin Tetreault and Hector Ortiz face a judge at Providence District Court May 23, 2016. (Marcos Valentin, WPRI-TV)

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — Two men facing multiple charges including drug possession and child cruelty faced a judge on the charges Monday morning.

Hector Ortiz, 38, and Corwin Tetreault, 27, both of Providence, were arraigned together at Providence District Court, handcuffed together at the wrists.

The Rhode Island State Police had pulled the men over in a Dodge Caravan on Friday on Orms Street in Providence. Tetreault had been driving. Ortiz, his 3-year-old child, and Tetreault’s girlfriend were the passengers. Police said they found 351 packets of what they believe was synthetic marijuana, and $1,195 in cash — both of which Tetreault said belonged to him. The van was also filled with garbage and partially-eaten food, and smelled of urine, police said. Ortiz said he’d been living in it with the child, but let Tetreault borrow it to deliver the drugs.

Hector Ortiz, May 23, 2016. (Marcos Valentin, WPRI-TV)
Hector Ortiz, May 23, 2016. (Marcos Valentin, WPRI-TV)

Ortiz is charged with cruelty to or neglect of a child, forgery and counterfeit of car registration plates, and giving false documents to a public official. He started shaking his head briefly as the charges were being read.

Though at court, Ortiz told the judge, “I don’t smoke,” the judge ordered Ortiz to undergo drug screening and monitoring and to have no contact with the child. Bail was set at $10,000 personal recognizance.

According to the Rhode Island Judiciary’s website, Ortiz was charged with driving without a license in December 2015, and twice more for the same crime in 2013.

Corwin Tetreault, May 23, 2016. (Marcos Valentin, WPRI-TV)
Corwin Tetreault, May 23, 2016. (Marcos Valentin, WPRI-TV)

Tetreault’s charges are possession of a Schedule I Drug (synthetic marijuana) with intent to deliver, driving under the influence, and driving without a license. He was ordered held without bail; he’s due to return to court for a hearing July 27, according to the District Court clerk’s office.

Tetreault’s previous criminal charges date back to a felony assault charge in 2007, according to the Judiciary.

Friday, the child was placed in the custody of the Department of Children, Youth and Families. The van had been towed.

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