A Fall River woman is facing heroin trafficking charges after being arrested Wednesday by Quincy police in a pancake house parking lot, where she was sitting in a car with her two children.
The arrest of Angela Tantillo, 26, of Fall River came after an investigation that had lasted several months. Tantillo, who also goes by the name “Cocoa,” had been under surveillance, said Quincy Police Captain John Dougan.
The Quincy drug control unit made an undercover buy from Tantillo during the investigation, and tests determined the substance was heroin, Dougan said.
Police followed Tantillo’s vehicle across the city Wednesday, observing her making stops on several streets until she met up with two men outside an IHOP on the Parkingway around 3:30 p.m., Dougan said.
Michael Quigley, 23, of Weymouth, was seen entering Tantillo’s parked car. He was arrested after returning to his car and attempting to drive away. Officers seized a bag containing a brown substance in his hand. Quigley was charged with possession of a Class A substance, conspiracy to violate controlled substance laws, and operating with a suspended license, Dougan said.
While officers were arresting Quigley, Michael Browne, 23, of Quincy also got into Tantillo’s vehicle. Police approached Tantillo and Browne, noticing that she had a 10-year-old girl and a 5-year-old boy in the back seat of her Jeep, Dougan said.
Tantillo allegedly told police that she “was just giving my cousin something,” then stated that Browne was sick and needed the heroin. She also told police that she “would never sell drugs with her kids in the car,” according to Dougan. Tantillo and Browne are not related.
Browne was arrested and charged with conspiracy to violate controlled substance laws and knowingly being present where heroin was kept.
Officers recovered more than 16 grams of heroin split up into plastic bags hidden in Tantillo’s bra and purse, as well as $2,290 in cash and a digital scale. Dougan said the street value of the drugs was about $6,000.
Also found on Tantillo was a wristlet that contained a tourniquet, hypodermic needles, and cotton swabs.
Tantillo was charged with trafficking a Class A substance, conspiracy to violate controlled substance laws, distributing a Class A substance, and two counts of child endangerment.
The children were taken into custody by the state’s Department of Children and Families and were placed in an emergency residence, likely with relatives, Dougan said.
“As a result of the Quincy drug control unit, we were able to get a supplier of heroin off of the streets of Quincy,” Dougan said.
Tantillo, Quigley, and Browne are slated to appear today in Quincy District Court, he said. Sarah N. Mattero can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.