Former Waterbury Resident Sentenced to Prison for Violating Conditions of Probation
John H. Durham, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that ALEA CRUZ, 20, formerly of Waterbury, was sentenced today by U.S. Magistrate Judge Sarah A. L. Merriam in New Haven to six months of imprisonment, followed by one year of supervised release, for violating the conditions of her probation.
According to court documents and statements made in court, in July 2016, as part of a DEA New Haven Task Force investigation that followed an overdose death, law enforcement officers made two controlled purchases of heroin from CRUZ’s boyfriend, Teddy Stuart Lopez, Jr., in Waterbury. On July 5, 2016, at Lopez’s direction, CRUZ delivered 20 bags of heroin to an individual for $100. CRUZ and Lopez were arrested on July 19, 2016.
On December 1, 2016, CRUZ pleaded guilty to one count of possession of a controlled substance, a misdemeanor offense. On February 27, 2017, Judge Merriam sentenced CRUZ to three years of probation and ordered her to pay a $1,000 fine at a rate of $40 per month.
Lopez pleaded guilty to a related heroin distribution offense and was sentenced to 15 months of imprisonment.
While on probation and under the supervision of U.S. Probation officers in Virginia and, most recently, Rhode Island, where she was residing, CRUZ tested positive for marijuana nine times and, on one occasion, provided a diluted urine specimen. She also failed to report to probation officers and failed to submit to drug screenings on multiple occasions, and failed to participate in substance abuse treatment as ordered. In addition, CRUZ violated her probation by associating with Lopez, a convicted felon, through email and the telephone. She also failed to make any installment payments on her court-ordered fine even though she had the ability to do so, and had made more than 50 payments totaling more than $1,800 to Lopez’s prison account.
At the conclusion of today’s court proceeding, CRUZ was remanded to the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service to begin serving her sentence.
This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Peter S. Jongbloed.