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Wilton woman charged with selling heroin

WILTON — A Wilton woman allegedly dealing heroin was arrested on Friday on charges connected to the sale of drugs in Nashua and shoplifting in Amherst.

Patti Amadon, 42, of Wilton was arrested by Wilton police on Friday, following a traffic stop, on warrants issued by both the Amherst Police Department and the Nashua Police Department. She was first transported to Amherst, where she was charged with one count of shoplifting and one count of criminal liability for the conduct for another, both class A misdemeanors.

According to Amherst Police Chief Mark Reams, the charges resulted from Amadon’s alleged attempted theft of $684 of merchandise from a Walmart in Amherst on Oct. 19.

Amherst police then transported Amadon to the Nashua Police Department, where she was charged with three counts of selling a narcotic drug, believed to be heroin, which is a felony offense.

Amadon’s arrest came after the conclusion of a four month investigation, according to Lieutenant David Bailey of Nashua police’s Narcotics Intelligence Division. Bailey declined to comment on the amount of heroin in each sale, but did say that in each case it was a “street-level” sale, which is enough for personal use for a single person.

“We did an investigation using confidential informants and/or undercover officers to make purchases from her,” explained Bailey. He would not comment further on the investigation.

Amadon was held at Valley Street Jail in lieu of $50,000 cash or surety bail, and was arraigned at the 9th Circuit Nashua District Court on Monday. Her bail was reduced to $10,000 cash or surety during her arraignment, and Amadon was transferred to Cheshire County Jail. Her probable cause hearing is scheduled to take place at the Nashua District Court on Dec. 31.

Wilton police aren’t bringing any further charges against Amadon at this time, according to Wilton Police Chief Brent Hautanen.

In Wilton, hard drugs such as heroin or cocaine are more common than many people think, said Hautanen.

“It’s around,” he said, “and I don’t think people realize how much of it is around. It’s fairly common in this area.”

More common than those substances, though, is recreational marijuana use and a growing prescription medication problem, he said.

“I think the larger issue is prescription medication. That’s huge,” said Hautanen. “That’s what we’re seeing the most of right now, discovering people in possession of prescription meds that they aren’t entitled to or authorized to have.”

In most cases where there are drug charges in town, he said, it is almost always an amount that indicates personal use, and not an intent to distribute.

The amount of drug crime the department has dealt with in the past year is down slightly from 2011, Hautanen said, although he attributed at least some of that drop to a lack of manpower to actively seek out drug users. Most of the drug cases that the force has dealt with in the past year were connected to other charges, he said.

“It’s been an extremely busy year in this department, and officers have simply been put to use on other things. We don’t have as many officers out looking for it, and we don’t have as much patrol time,” he explained.

Ashley Saari can be reached at 924-7172 ext. 235 or asaari@ledgertranscript.com. She’s on Twitter at @AshleySaari.

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