Police were involved in a foot chase across the city Friday night, ending in the arrest of two Salem men on several drug trafficking charges.
At 7:38 p.m. Friday, police witnessed suspicious activity in the parking lot of on Washington Street rear. An undercover police unit witnessed what they believed to be a drug transaction and approached one of the men - Aquilles Sanchez, 28, 100 Loring Ave.
According to police, as an officer approached, Sanchez lunged into his vehicle and threw the car into reverse with his door open. The door struck the officer, police said. Sanchez then went forward, hitting two parked cars and headed onto Derby Street. A nearby officer on a mountain bicycle followed the car as it weaved in and out of traffic and headed up Washington Street near City Hall.
According to police reports, the car continued onto Lynde Street where a plastic baggie was thrown out of the car. The car continued into the parking lot of Murphy's Funeral Home, almost striking two people leaving a service, police said.Sanchez then jumped out of the vehicle and ran down Federal Street. Sanchez ran onto Bridge Street, jumped two fences near the old Universal Steel building and onto River Street where he took off his jacket and threw it on the ground, police said.
With multiple units following Sanchez, police found Sanchez on the ground being held down by two River Street residents, police said. While police were transporting Sanchez for booking, other officers went into Boston Billiards and spotted the man who was involved in the earlier transaction - Leonel Grullon, 23, 189 Lafayette St., Salem.
As police approached Grullon, he threw his pool cue at officers and began to run out the door. One of the officers grabbed him by his hooded sweatshirt and they both fell down the front stairs, breaking the railing. Grullon continued to fight with officers in the parking lot, injuring one of the officers' pinky finger. As the fight ensued, Grullon's money was flying all over the parking lot, police said.
Police were eventually able to get Grullon in handcuffs and place him under arrest.
In the baggie that was thrown from Sanchez's vehicle, police found 90 Oxycodon pills and three smaller bags with nine pills each. Sanchez was charged with trafficking a class B substance over 14 grams (subsequent offense), possession with intent to distribute in a school zone, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, leaving the scene of an accident, driving to endanger, speeding, failure to stop for police, resisting arrest, being disorderly and driving with a revoked license.
After police obtained a search warrant, police reportedly found nine one ounce bags of marijuana hidden in the spare tire compartment of Grullon's vehicle.
Grullon was charged with trafficking a class B substance over 14 grams, possession with intent to distribute in a school zone, possession with intent to distribute a class D substance (subsequent offense), possession with intent to distribute in a school zone, assault and battery on a police officer, being disorderly and resisting arrest.
During booking, Grullon was found to have $13,257 on him. Sanchez and Grullon were previously convicted of possession of class B with intent to distribute and Sanchez was also previously convicted of possession with intent to distribute in a school zone, according to police.