A 26-year-old officer from the Paterson Police Department — third in two weeks — was arrested for allegedly dealing heroin, crack-cocaine, powder cocaine, and marijuana, according to U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito.
Ruben McAusland, 26, of Paterson, was apprehended by FBI agents on Friday morning. He is charged with distribution and possession. Federal authorities said McAusland dealt various types of drugs from late 2017 through early 2018 to a person cooperating with the FBI.
Authorities cited a number of instances when he sold drugs to a witness, who cooperated with law enforcement in hopes of obtaining a more favorable outcome to a recent drug conviction.
On Sept. 28, 2017, McAusland spoke to the witness using FaceTime, an iPhone video chatting application, and offered to sell heroin, marijuana, and cocaine for $50.
On Oct. 2, 2017, McAusland invited the buyer into his 2012 Chevy Camaro.
“You wanted 50?” asked McAusland.
“I’ll take the 50,” replied with unidentified witness.
McAusland sold 35 grams of marijuana, 48 grams of heroin, 31 grams of cocaine, and 31 grams of cocaine, according to charging documents.
Oct. 12, 2017: McAusland received a phone call from the witness.
“You buy trees?” McAusland asked the witness.
“It depends on how much it is,” replied with witness.
“Uh, a pound.”
McAusland stated the price: $2,500.
“Let me talk to my man. Let me see what he wanna do,” the witness told the officer.
Oct. 13, 2017, the witness called McAusland.
“They sold, bro,” McAusland told him.
“You said they sold already?” replied the witness.
“They sold 3 for 27,” replied McAusland meaning three pounds of marijuana were sold for $2,700 per pound.
“I’ll let you know if I bump into something else,” McAusland told the witness.
“Alright, well, keep me posted,” replied the witness.
Nov 2, 2017: McAusland sent a text to the witness. “Yoooo Same deal.” He offered a pound of marijuana to the witness for $2,500.
At 11:20 p.m., McAusland met with witness as FBI agents watched. The witness was observed entering McAusland’s vehicle.
“What’s good, Roob?” said the witness while quickly adding, “Here you go” as $2,500 in cash was handed over to the officer.
One pound of marijuana was exchanged for the cash.
“How much can you buy at a time?” asked McAusland.
“If we buy a lot, y’ll come down on the number?” asked the witness.
McAusland replied he is open to reducing price on volume.
The witness handed FBI agents the 1.9 pounds of marijuana bought from the officer.
Jan. 24, 2018, at 3:30 p.m., McAusland met the witness in his vehicle. 1 pound of marijuana was exchanged for $2,400.
Where was McAusland getting the drugs?
“When you gonna come across something else for me?” asked the witness.
“Yo, I had a big bust, but we had too many bosses there. We had like 50 vials of crack cocaine,” said McAusland.
On Jan. 25, 2018, McAusland got in touch with the witness again.
“I got a big-time move that came to my table. You deal with white?” asked McAusland speaking of cocaine.
“Yeah, hell yea. They turn it into crack, it’s good,” replied the witness.
McAusland told him he had a kilo of cocaine.
“30-something,” replied McAusland suggesting as much as $30,000. “I’ll get the numbers for you.”
The witness said his uncle deals “white.”
McAusland told the witness the cocaine was “straight out of the Southern border.”
“I’ll hit you with a number and then, uh, we’ll talk,” McAusland told the witness.
Feb. 9, 2018: McAusland arrived at the witness’s house in his police car. He discussed selling certain pills, according to charging documents.
“We make ‘em” and “it’s pure dope,” McAusland told the witness.
The witness wanted to know prices. The officer agreed to provide samples of the heroin pills that look like Percocets.
Feb. 11, 2018: McAusland met the witness at 11:30 p.m. in a supermarket parking lot, half-mile of the police headquarters. He arrived in a marked police vehicle.
McAusland gave his buyer four pills.
Mcausland warned the buyer to watch out for cameras.
“There’s cameras here,” McAusland told him.
Feb. 13, 2018, the witness sent a text to McAusland. “What’s the numbers on these?”
“7 per pill,” replied McAusland, $7 per pill.
The witness replied with an angry emotion icon.
“I don’t wanna hear it!” replied McAusland.
“U said they pressed dope right cause my boy don’t believe me he said they hit like the real thing [.]“
McAusland told the witness to call him.
Feb. 14, 2018: at 8 p.m. both met in McAusland’s vehicle.
McAusland sold $400 worth of heroin pills.
On Feb. 15, 2018. Both talked again.
“You still want more?” asked McAusland. “I just got 150 more.”
“No discount?” asked the witness.
McAusland offered to sell the entire lot or in batches.
The witness told the officer to hold on to the pills for him.
“Nah, this is your deal, man,” McAusland told him.
Feb. 17, 2018: 5:10 p.m. Both met inside McAusland’s vehicle. 88 heroin pills were exchanged for $600.
McAusland asked if the pills were “moving,” selling well.
The witness replied in the affirmative.
Mar. 16, 2018: Both met again in a vehicle. 101 pills were exchanged for $700. The witness asked about the kilo of cocaine.
McAusland replied, “We gotta go down there” — “Texas.”
Apr. 1, 2018: Both met at 4 p.m. in McAusland’s car. 1,010 heroin pill was exchanged for $7,000.
McAusland handed the witness a Similac, baby formula, container filled with baggies of heroin pills. “There’s a thousand and ten here,” McAusland told the witness.
Later in that meeting, McAusland said, “I’m gettin’ 100 pounds of weed coming in.”
“Two grand a pop, but you gotta buy 3,” McAusland told the witness.
McAusland is the third police officer to be charged with corruption this month. Last week, the FBI arrested police officers Jonathan Bustios, 28, and Eudy Ramos, 31, for warrantless searches, filing false police reports, and extortion.
Both Bustios and Ramos pleaded not guilty in court. All three officers joined the police force in Jan. 2014.
“These were obviously three rotten apples,” said police director Jerry Speziale on Friday afternoon. He said McAusland will be placed on unpaid suspension as were the other two officers.
McAusland was making $48,860 when he allegedly sold drugs.
“This is not indicative of the 420 police officers,” said Speziale. He said the police department forwarded information to federal authorities.
All three officers were flagged by the police early warning system, said the director.
The police director plans to address his officers at roll call on Friday afternoon.
“We have to do what we have to do. We cannot tolerate corruption. It’s not indicative of them,” said Speziale. “I’m proud of what they do every day. We’re proud that they don’t engage in corruption. We’re proud that they don’t cover up corruption.”