TAUNTON — A Taunton man who police said concealed both crack cocaine and fentanyl in his buttocks was busted this week for trafficking drugs and narcotics distribution.
Police say Dedric H. Rhodes, 26, last known address 275 Somerset Ave., was concealing a plastic bag containing 32 smaller baggies — in which were stashed a total weight of 15.5 grams of fentanyl and 14.8 grams of smokeable crack.
Rhodes was subsequently arraigned for trafficking in excess of 10 grams of fentanyl; distribution of a Class A drug; possession with intent to distribute a Class B controlled substance; conspiracy to violate drug laws; and committing a drug violation near either a school or public park.
During his arraignment the next day in Taunton district court, a judge ordered that Rhodes be held without bail pending a dangerousness hearing scheduled for this Friday.
Police say they grabbed Rhodes and 40-year-old Dighton resident Brent Nelson of 1580 Stanzione Drive on Monday afternoon, after a plainclothes detective in an unmarked car noticed two men standing next to a white SUV, parked near the jungle gym in Weir Riverfront Park on East Water Street.
Nelson was arrested a short time later after police say he got into a black Nissan Sentra being driven by Rhodes.
Police say Nelson, who at one point became combative after exiting the car, subsequently admitted having bought $40 worth of either heroin or fentanyl from the driver, later identified as Rhodes.
Nelson allegedly told cops he takes methadone to combat drug addiction and that he bought the heroin or fentanyl “for a friend.”
Police, according to their report, said they’re convinced Nelson bought the drugs for one of the men standing next to the SUV in the park.
After pulling over Rhodes in his car, police said they found a jar of Vaseline brand petroleum jelly, a small amount of marijuana, a digital scale with a white residue, and plastic baggies.
While being booked at headquarters, police informed Rhodes the jelly inside the Vaseline jar had a finger swipe impression, and asked if he had inserted drugs into his anal cavity.
Police, in their report, note that drug dealers sometimes use petroleum jelly as a lubricant to conceal narcotics in body cavities.
The Taunton Daily Gazette in August reported the arrest of a Queens, New York man in Taunton suspected of hiding drugs in his anus.
He was transported to Morton Hospital where police say he was uncooperative during two CAT scans of his lower body, the results of which were inconclusive.
The Gazette also reported in July that police had arrested a city woman who allegedly concealed 32 grams of fentanyl and heroin in her vagina.
Police say during the booking process Rhodes “was walking strangely to the camera area, almost clinching his buttocks as he walked.”
After placing him in a holding cell, police said they told Rhodes they were concerned he might be placing himself at risk, if he in fact was hiding drugs inside his body.
Police say after he agreed to lower his shorts they instructed Rhodes to squat and cough, but that he at first kept his body sideways.
After a second request, Rhodes allegedly followed their instructions and police successfully retrieved the bag of narcotics that had been “clinched between his butt cheeks.”
Fentanyl is a powerful prescription painkiller that has been described as being at least 50 times more potent than heroin in terms of its narcotic effect.
Police say they also seized $474 in cash and two cell phones from Rhodes.
Nelson was released on his own recognizance after being arraigned in court for possession of a Class A drug and conspiracy to violate the drug laws.