A Texas man has been charged in Steele County Court after he allegedly mailed a package to himself that contained drugs, according to court documents.
Roberto Rocha, 35, was charged Thursday with first-degree and fifth-degree drug possession, both felonies. The charges stem from a South Central Drug Investigation Unit investigation – or SCIDU – that took place on April 20.
According to the criminal complaint, SCDIU was contacted by a detective with the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport police department regarding a suspicious package that was being sent to an Owatonna address from Texas. A K-9 unit that is trained to detect the odor of controlled substances had alerted airport police of the package, which upon opening contained 54.5 grams of cocaine and 139.3 grams of marijuana, according to the report.
Local agents worked with the airport police to arrange delivery of the package to the Owatonna address. SCDIU agents conducted surveillance on the residence and watched as a man brought the box into the house. According to court documents, the person whose name appeared on the return address of the package arrived at the home. After several minutes, SCDIU and the Owatonna police executed a search warrant at the house, making entry after announcing themselves several times with no response.
A man inside the home identified himself as Randy Robert Rocha, however SCDIU agents were aware that Randy Rocha was currently in custody in Olmsted County for a narcotics crime. He was later identified as Roberto Rocha by dispatch and the tenant of the home, according to the report.
Agents were advised the Rocha had a federal arrest warrant out of Texas from the same city the package originated from. The warrant was a detainer for a probation violation for a federal weapons conviction.
In a Mirandized interview, Rocha originally told officers he had purchased the marijuana located in the home in Owatonna and denied having any cocaine. Officers located the cocaine from the package under a mattress and confirmed the marijuana lying on the same bed was also from the package.
Rocha is currently in custody at the Steele County Detention Center and bail without conditions has been set at $20,000. His next court appearance is scheduled for May 3.
Woman charged after allegedly choking minor
An Owatonna woman is facing felony charges after she allegedly choked a minor during an argument with another adult.
Jessica Marie Larson, 38, was charged Friday with one felony count of domestic assault by strangulation as well as three additional misdemeanor domestic assault charges. The charges stem from an incident that took place on March 7.
According to the criminal complaint, Minnesota Prairie County Alliance received a report regarding the physical abuse of a child in Owatonna. The parent of the victim told law enforcement that they had been arguing with Larson when she threatened to choke the victim. Larson than began choking the victim and bit the victim’s parent when they pulled her away.
The victim told detectives that Larson used both her hands to choke them for about 10 seconds and that they were able to breathe a little but unable to talk.
Laron’s first court appearance is scheduled for June 3.
Report of trespassing leads to felony charges
An Owatonna man is facing felony assault charges after he allegedly trespassed in an apartment building, according to court documents.
Mark Anthony Burciaga, 33, was charged Monday with two felony counts of domestic assault.
According to the criminal complaint, Owatonna police responded to an apartment building for a trespassing report. The building staff had previously served Burciaga a trespass notice, but told officers he was refusing to leave.
Officers located Burciaga inside an apartment unit where they could hear yelling coming from inside. The tenant of the unit told officers that Burciaga began yelling at them and eventually threw a remote at their head. Officers observed a bump on the back of the victim’s head along with black and blue bruises on their left arm that were consistent with someone grabbing them.
Burciaga’s criminal history includes felony convictions dating back to 2009 in Steele and Rice counties. Charges range from domestic assault to drug sales and manufacturing to burglary.
Burciaga is currently in custody at the Steele County Detention Center and bail without conditions has been set at $30,000. His next court appearance is scheduled for May 3.