City man gets jail time after latest arrest
WOONSOCKET — After police allegedly caught him squatting in a vacant tenement, a homeless man now has a secure place to live – for 15 days, anyway.
That was the sentence meted out in Sixth District Court Friday to Angel Luis Echevarria, 24, after he was arrested for breaking and entering without the owner’s consent the previous night. Echevarria, of no permanent address, and two juveniles, were all charged with the felony offense after the owner of 220 Logee St. reported that there were squatters living in a vacant unit on the third floor of the multifamily.
Police went over to check on the complaint about 7 p.m. and knocked on the door. It was Echevarria who opened up, and when he did, police said, they immediately smelled marijuana wafting from inside the apartment.
Echevarria volunteered that he was “hanging out and smoking” weed with his friends – two 17-year-olds, according to a police report.
“He stated he had been living in the apartment alone after the previous tenants were evicted,” Officer Robert J. Frye reported.
The landlord told officers that he had evicted the prior tenants just three days earlier. He didn’t say why, but police observed “severe damage to the apartment walls,” including several areas where holes appeared to have been punched through the walls.
The landlord told police no one should have been living in the apartment after the eviction. He said it was the prior tenants, however, who alerted him that someone had broken in and was squatting there.
Although Sixth District Court Judge Anthony Capraro set bail for Echevarria on the breaking and entering charge – $300 surety bail – he ordered the suspect held for violating his probation for domestic assault after a conviction on charges lodged against him earlier this year. Echevarria could have contested the violation, but he admitted it and Capraro sentenced him to 15 days at the Adult Correctional Institutions, retroactive to Oct. 11, accordng to the judiciary’s website.
The court’s database says Echevarria has at least six prior arrests on his record dating back to 2014 for offenses that include domestic assault, larceny and possession of a controlled substance with the intent to deliver.