Narcotics seized, two arrested

Published 9:19 am Friday, July 24, 2009

On Tuesday, July 21, at about 1;30 p.m., the Berrien County Sheriff Department’s Narcotics Unit and the Cass County Sheriff Department’s Narcotics Unit conducted a joint investigation into illegal narcotic trafficking taking place in both Berrien and Cass counties.

During this investigation conducted on Tuesday, undercover police officers were able to purchase approximately $1,000 worth of marijuana from Ronald Clayton Mathis, 50, of 6691 Stevensville-Baroda Road, Stevensville, and Guillermo Palafox, 52, 6943 Bailey Road, Eau Claire.

They were working in conjunction with each other on the narcotic sales. This illegal narcotic transaction took place in Silver Creek Township in Cass County.

After the illegal narcotic transaction took place, deputies from the Berrien County Sheriff’s Department and the Cass County Sheriff’s Department then arrested both Mathis and Palafox for Conspiracy in the Delivery of Marijuana second Offense.

During the arrest of Mathis he briefly fought with the deputies, however nobody sustained any injuries. Therefore Mathis was also arrested on an additional charge of Resisting and Obstructing a Police Officer.

During the arrest of Palafox, the officers located and seized a 410 gauge shotgun and ammunition for this firearm from a vehicle owned by Guillermo Palafox. Therefore he was also arrested on additional charges of being a Felon in Possession of a Firearm and Possession of a Firearm During the Commission of a Felony, as he has a prior Felony Conviction for Possession of Marijuana with the Intent to Deliver out of the Berrien County Trial Courts.

During this investigation, the deputies also seized $447 in U.S. Currency, a 1993 Chevrolet pick-up truck, and a 1995 Dodge mini-van under the State of Michigan’s Civil Forfeiture Law.

Both Mathis and Palafox were lodged at the Cass County Jail pending their arraignments in the Cass County Courts on their above mentioned respective charges.