Two arrested for cocaine in Portage
By Erin Guerra Post-Tribune correspondent February 21, 2013 1:20PM
Updated: March 23, 2013 6:27AM
PORTAGE — Surveillance of what police described as a known drug dealer’s vehicle, outside his place of legitimate employment, resulted in the arrests of two men on felony charges.
Sometime after 10 p.m. Wednesday, officers received information that Roy Manna III, 35, of Portage, may be dealing cocaine in the parking lot behind the restaurant along U.S. 6 after he gets off work.
As officers watched the green 1999 Buick sedan, a gold 2006 Chevrolet Impala parked beside it around 11:40 p.m. and a man, later identified as Pedro Galarza III, 35, of Portage, went inside the restaurant for two minutes and then drove away.
An officer followed Galarza, using his crossing over the center line at Airport and American Way to pull him over. When asked why he had gone into the restaurant for such a short period of time, Galarza reportedly said it was because a friend, “Roy,” worked there. After giving Galarza a traffic warning, the officer asked permission for a search and he consented. Police found 14 small plastic bags with powdered cocaine in Galarza’s pockets.
He reportedly said he bought the drugs for his own use, from an unknown person at a gas station.
He was arrested for dealing cocaine, a Class A felony. Galarza’s car was impounded pending possible seizure, and police took $319 cash and his cell phone as evidence.
Behind the restaurant, meanwhile, police saw Manna get into his vehicle and leave at about 12:25 a.m. Thursday. Police followed and, when Manna reportedly crossed the center line, stopped him at U.S. 6 and Swanson Road.
Given a traffic warning, Manna consented to a search of his vehicle, police said, in which officers found a scale with cocaine residue and a bundle of small sandwich bags in the trunk. Manna denied knowledge of the paraphernalia, suggesting it may belong to a relative who also uses the car. However, at the spot where he was standing during the search, police said they found a plastic bag with a small amount of cocaine on the ground. Manna was arrested for possession of cocaine, a Class D felony. His cell phone also was seized and his car impounded.