putnam sheriff

“Most Wanted” Carmel Man Arrested on Warrant, Drug Charges; Second Suspect Also Faces Drug Charges

Putnam County Sheriff Donald B. Smith reports the arrest of a wanted subject who was recently profiled on the “Most Wanted” section of the Sheriff’s Department website.

Alexander Cruz, 38, of Route 6, Carmel was wanted on a Bench Warrant issued by the Town of Carmel Justice Court in late 2014 on a charge of grand larceny. The warrant was issued after the subject failed to appear in court to answer charges the Sheriff’s Department had filed against him for possessing and using a stolen credit card.

On April 1, 2015, members of the Sheriff’s Department Narcotics Enforcement Unit (NEU) were conducting surveillance in the hamlet of Carmel when they developed information that Mr. Cruz was possibly staying at an apartment in the hamlet. Deputies assigned to the NEU approached the address and located the subject inside.

During the bench warrant arrest, deputies determined that Mr. Cruz was in possession of a quantity of crack cocaine, marijuana, needles and $1300.00 in cash. Mr. Cruz was additionally charged with Bail Jumping in the Second Degree, Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Third Degree and Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Fifth Degree, felonies; and with Criminally Possessing a Hypodermic Instrument, a misdemeanor. The defendant, who has an extensive criminal arrest record, was arraigned before Town of Kent Justice Kevin Douchkoff and remanded to the Putnam County Correctional Facility without bail. If found guilty of the most serious felony charge, Mr. Cruz could face up to 25 years in a New York State Correctional Facility and a fine of up to $30,000.00.

Deputies also determined that two children reside in the home which was strewn with narcotics residue and paraphernalia, household garbage and animal waste. Putnam County Child Protective Services was notified based upon the hazardous living conditions found inside the home. The children remained in the custody of their mother.

During the arrest of Mr. Cruz, members of the NEU encountered a second individual behaving suspiciously in the parking lot of the residence. An investigation revealed that the subject was in possession of crack cocaine, crack pipes and hypodermic needles. The subject, identified as Blaise Santella, 28, of Lexington Avenue, Cortlandt Manor, New York was arrested at the scene and charged with Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Seventh Degree and with Criminally Possessing a Hypodermic Instrument, misdemeanors. He was processed and released pending a future court appearance. If found guilty of the misdemeanor charges, he could face up to a year in jail and a fine of up to $1,000.00 for each charge.