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Man found in stolen car, claiming he rented the vehicle

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Police say a man who claimed he “rented” a stolen car was caught with more than 80 grams of drugs and arrested for trafficking.

Ernest Pineda, 35, of Hobbs, was found in a car reported stolen on Monday after the victim used On Star to locate the vehicle and notified police.

According to a Hobbs Police Department criminal complaint, Pineda was found sitting in the stolen vehicle in a driveway on N. Houston and E. Wolfcamp.

After arresting Pineda, officers found heroin, methamphetamine, a firearm tucked in-between the seat, and a burnt marijuana “roach” in the stolen vehicle, the report states.

Pineda allegedly told police he rented the vehicle from “a scruffy white boy” for $100, and allegedly tried to sell the vehicle for $4,000. The report states, Pineda was unable to provide the name of the “boy”, but the messages were on his phone.

“I rented it for 24 hours, I picked up the vehicle and I even cleaned it because it was dirty on the inside and out,” Pineda allegedly told police.

Officers stated Pineda claimed the keys were in his pocket, but officers found a “wad” of cash which Pineda said was approximately $600. It was later determined the amount was more than $1,000.

Pineda allegedly told police the money was from his construction job to purchase materials. However, when officers went through the vehicle they found drugs, a scale, a glass meth pipe, and a Louis Vuitton eyeglass case inside a Crown Royal bag.

cyber-deal

The eyeglass case held a large Ziploc bag with 71 grams of methamphetamine, officers stated. Another baggie containing 12 grams of a brown substance, which was later identified as heroin, was also found.

Near the floorboard, a loaded HiPoint CF380 .380CP caliber was found, the report states. Officers also found Pineda’s phone in the vehicle, and allegedly requested to see the messages to corroborate his story of renting the vehicle.

“Pineda withdrew his offer to allow me to look through his phone,” the report states. “I asked Pineda about the loaded firearm and narcotics located near where he was sitting. Pineda denied ownership or knowledge of the items, despite claiming that he had cleaned/detailed the vehicle once he got it.”

Once arrested and at Hobbs City jail, officers discovered the cash Pineda was carrying totaled about $1,642. He allegedly told officers when asked about the amount, “I knew it was something with a ‘6’.”

Pineda was charged with two counts of trafficking a controlled substance, both first-degree felonies; parole violation and possession of a firearm by a felon, both fourth-degree felonies; and possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of marijuana, both misdemeanors.

According to court records, this is Pineda’s second charge related to the trafficking of a controlled substance.

Pineda had his first appearance on Tuesday and was released on a surety bond of $5,000.

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