A Bronx man police called a “major player” in the North County drug trade was sentenced to up to four years in state prison after pleading guilty to cocaine trafficking and other charges.
Derek “Reppy” Witter, 32, was one of 10 or so Bronx drug dealers who would come up in pairs to North Adams, “set up shop,” usually at the residence of a drug addict, and sell cocaine and heroin, sometimes prescription pills, and then return to New York City, according to Assistant Berkshire District Attorney Rachael Eramo. She said there was “a network” of local people who helped the dealers, providing them with cellphones and places to stay.
The Berkshire County Drug Task Force and North Adams police began an investigation into drug sales in Northern Berkshire County, centered on North Adams, in January 2013.
Witter sold crack cocaine to a police informant and was later arrested during a police raid of a Mohawk Forest Boulevard home on November 26, 2013, in which 250 bags of crack cocaine and heroin, with an estimated street value of $10,000, were discovered by police, according to investigators. They allegedly found more than $4,000 in cash, more than 150 grams of crack cocaine and heroin, scales, a bag of unidentified pills, packaging materials and 15 cellphones in the home after executing two search warrants.
Witter was one of 10 people charged in the bust. At the time, North Adams Police Director Michael Cozzaglio called the suspects “major players” in the drug trade.
On Wednesday in Berkshire Superior Court, Witter appeared before Judge John A. Agostini and pleaded guilty to felony cocaine trafficking and distribution, possession of heroin and cocaine with the intent to distribute, and two counts of conspiracy to violate the drug laws.
Agostini sentenced him to serve a minimum of 3 1/2 years and no more than four years in state prison in line with a joint recommendation between Eramo and Witter’s attorney, Thomas C. Doyle.
The DA’s Office dropped three charges — two counts of witness intimidation and assault and battery with a dangerous weapon.
The charges were related to a July 2013 incident in which Witter and another man, Johnte Smith, allegedly threatened to kill a 40-year-old North Adams woman if she testified against Smith. Police say Smith and two other Bronx men, but not Witter, sexually assaulted the woman in April of last year.
Witter was given credit for the 345 days he was held in jail awaiting the outcome of the case and unable to make $50,000 bail.