An Augusta pair have been charged with drug trafficking after a search of their apartment turned up large quantities of heroin and crack cocaine, some of which was stored in a bedroom used by children.

Joseph Oliveira Jr., 26, and Kristen Swift, 27, were each charged with violating conditions of release after a search of an apartment they share at 14 Orchard St. uncovered nearly 30 grams of heroin and 10 grams of crack cocaine, interim Kennebec County Sheriff Ryan Reardon said.

The amount of heroin is another indication of the drug epidemic affecting the area, he said. Heroin historically has been sold by one-tenth of a gram, but in the past few years police have seen increasing amounts per sale. One recent arrest uncovered two quarter-grams of heroin, and Reardon said deputies have seen it sold in amounts as much as a gram.

“We didn’t see these amounts ever,” Reardon said. “The amounts that we’re finding are increasing, which tells me there is a very serious problem.”

Sheriff deputies and Maine drug enforcement agents, responding to a tip, searched Swift’s apartment Wednesday afternoon. The officers found more than half of the heroin and cocaine during that search.

“Some of the heroin was found in the children’s room,” Reardon said.

He was unsure how many children lived in the home or what their ages are, but said they were school-age. Deputies called the Department of Health and Human Services to investigate, Reardon said.

Both Swift and Oliveira were charged later with trafficking in prison contraband when a search at the Kennebec County jail uncovered drugs and paraphernalia hidden on their bodies, Reardon said.

The remaining crack and heroin were found after Oliveira and Swift were taken to the jail. Reardon said Swift had heroin and paraphernalia hidden in her bra and Oliveira had about 15 grams of heroin hidden in his buttocks.

“Both of them were warned numerous times if they had anything to take it out,” Reardon said.

Oliveira is facing additional charges of aggravated trafficking in heroin and aggravated trafficking in crack cocaine.

Swift also is charged with trafficking in heroin and trafficking in crack cocaine.

Both are being held at the Kennebec County jail without bail until their scheduled initial court appearance Thursday.

Craig Crosby — 621-5642

[email protected]

Twitter: @CraigCrosby4


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