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April 03, 2012
WEST SALEM -- A West Salem man was arrested late last month in connection with an illegal drug operation near an elementary school.
A Drug Enforcement Administration task force served a search warrant at 2116 Western Heights Loop Northwest on March 21 and took Marcus Anthony Cuellar, 23, into custody.
Cuellar was charged with a long list of felony drug crimes that included delivery, possession and/or manufacture of marijuana, methamphetamine, heroin and cocaine.
All of this was happening in a residence less than 1,000 feet from Meyers Elementary School, according to court records.
Officers found more than $3,000 in cash, a quarter ounce of methamphetamine and a small amount of heroin in Cuellar's possession.
During a search of Cuellar's residence, authorities discovered 10 small marijuana plants, two pounds of dried pot, an ounce of cocaine, scales, packing materials and drug records.
They also found an AR-15 rifle and three handguns, one of which was reported stolen in Linn County, according to court records.
Cuellar told authorities he had been selling heroin for three years and had recently started selling cocaine. Cuellar is a medical marijuana grower and patient, according to court records. He said this was his first grow and denied selling pot.
Cuellar is lodged in Polk County Jail, with bail set at $510,000.
A spokesman with the DEA's Salem field office said Cuellar's arrest was part of an ongoing investigation and declined to comment.