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Alleged gang member caught with meth

Man had drugs and paraphernalia suggesting that he was a dealer, police say.

August 08, 2012|By Veronica Rocha, veronica.rocha@latimes.com

A reputed gang member was arrested Monday on suspicion of drug sales after police found several baggies of methamphetamine and digital scales inside his bedroom, officials said.

Paul Escoto, 46, who claimed to belong to a Northeast Los Angeles gang, was taken into custody about 2:16 p.m. in the 3400 block of Emerald Isle Drive in connection with transporting and possessing methamphetamine for sale, according to Glendale police.

Officers conducting a burglary surveillance operation stopped Escoto after witnessing several traffic violations, police said.

He told them he was borrowing his mother's car and had a box containing methamphetamine inside, police said.

After finding the meth, Escoto allowed officers to search a room inside his parents' home on Kirkham Drive, but he said he didn't want them to be disturbed, according to police.

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Leon Mayer, a longtime city activist who speaks at most City Council meetings on behalf of the Friends of the Glendale Public Library, owns the Kirkham Drive home and shares it with his wife, whose son is Escoto.

Mayer and his wife allowed Escoto to move into a bedroom inside their home a few years ago.

“This was a surprise to all of us,” Mayer said.

He added that he hasn't talked to Escoto and doesn't plan to, and that Escoto will not be allowed back into his home.

Inside Escoto's room, detectives reported finding small plastic bags containing meth, numerous empty bags, digital scales, documents with dollar and weight amounts, gang paraphernalia and a dagger.

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