Two Atlantic City cousins had a full-service drug-production facility that included their own stamp, according to charges by the state.
Ahmad Williams was ordered held pending trial Thursday, after a judge heard some of the evidence against him.
“I believe that the defendant is a significant danger to the community,” Superior Court Judge Benjamin Podolnick said, going against the public safety assessment recommendation for release with conditions.
Williams, 23, had been on probation seven months for an Ocean County drug conviction when he was charged earlier this month with his 20-year-old cousin, Yahshaun Stukes-Williams.
He also is one of 42 defendants charged in a pending Atlantic County drug case.
Inside the home at 810 N. Maryland Ave., police found more than a 1,000 bags of heroin. But more importantly, Assistant Prosecutor Allison Eiselen told the judge, was that investigators found everything needed to cut, weigh, package and sell heroin. That includes inositol powder, a cutting agent used to stretch the drug to increase profits, and a stamp with ink refills.
“They put their own stamps on the drugs?” Podolnick asked.
“Yes, your honor,” Eiselen replied.
Stukes-Williams was already ordered held last week. He too has a pending case, as one of six charged in a deadly shootout on the Atlantic City Expressway in August 2016.
But Stukes-Williams was not the target of this investigation, Eiselen said. It was Williams, who was not at the home at the time of the raid, but turned himself in the next day.
The investigation included controlled drug buys, but the state has not yet charged Williams in those, Eiselen said. A confidential informant’s protection is key in that part of the case, she said.
Eiselen questioned Williams’ public safety assessment under the new bail reform, which gave him a fairly high five out of six both for failure to appear and risk of re-offending, yet recommended he be released with conditions pending trial.
“If you can figure that out, explain it to me,” the judge told her.
“Sometimes I find that the public safety assessments are accurate,” he said before making his decision to detain Williams. “Sometimes I think they get it completely wrong.”
This, it seems, was one of those times.