Three people were arrested Thursday night after allegedly dealing drugs to undercover police at the Occupy Boston camp.
Atu Austin, 31, of Boston, Lamont Daughtery, 21, of Hyde Park, and Thomas E. McLaughlin, 29, of Hyde Park, were arrested Thursday evening and charged with distribution of a Class B substance, Boston police said in a statement.
McLaughlin was also charged with a second or subsequent distribution of a Class B substance.
After receiving information that there were individuals in the Occupy Boston camp involved with drug dealing, undercover officers were deployed to locate the individuals, the statement said.
The officers engaged McLaughlin and Daughtery, beginning a discussion about crack cocaine, police said. McLaughlin and Daughtery allegedly told officers no one had any drugs left in the tent area, and that they would walk to get them some. Daughtery also told officers if they had come earlier or if they knew they were coming, they would have brought more with them, police said.
The officers followed the suspects to retrieve the drugs, and on the way, the two men allegedly requested money from the officers and asked if they would be “hooked up” for bringing the officers to get the drugs. The officers agreed to do so and continued on with the suspects, the statement said.
At one point, Daughtery stayed behind with officers while McLaughlin went to meet with Austin in an alleyway, police said. After an exchange between the two, McLaughlin met up with officers and Daughtery, according to police. McLaughlin allegedly told officers that they should complete the transaction somewhere else because the area they were in was “hot.”
Officers told the suspects they did not want to walk back to South Station, and the transaction was completed, police said. The suspects and officers then separated, and the three suspects were placed under arrest by officers on surveillance a short time later, according to police.
All three men were arraigned this morning in Boston Municipal Court, and pleaded not guilty, said Jake Wark, spokesman for Suffolk County District Attorney Daniel F. Conley. Austin was held on $1,000 cash bail, and his co-defendants were held on $500 cash bail each. They are expected to return to court on Dec. 16.
Amanda Cedrone can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.