Springfield man arrested with heroin, unlicensed firearm during traffic stop

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SPRINGFIELD — A routine license plate check led to the arrest of a Springfield man for narcotics and firearm possession after a state trooper stopped an improperly registered vehicle on Route 91 near Whately shortly before 8 p.m. on Jan. 2.

Trooper Joshua Kopeski, part of the State Police Troop B Community Action Team, conducted an electronic inquiry on a white Nissan SUV which revealed that the license plates were registered to a Saturn VUE.

Kopeski activated his cruiser’s lights and initiated a traffic stop.

The driver, identified as Mathew Lopez, 21, was informed by Kopeski that the vehicle was not properly registered and would be towed.

Lopez was asked to exit the vehicle so an inventory could be taken.

During the inventory process, Trooper Kopeski discovered a bag containing approximately 500 wax packets of suspected heroin in the trunk.

Trooper Jack Sarnacki arrived to assist, and Lopez was placed under arrest.

A thorough search of the vehicle unearthed a Glock 19 pistol with a loaded 15-round magazine and an additional extended 30-round magazine.

Lopez does not hold a firearm license.

Following the arrest, Lopez was taken to the Northampton Barracks for booking.

A bail commissioner set his bail at $25,000.

Lopez faces arraignment at Greenfield District Court on multiple charges including trafficking in fentanyl, illegal possession of a firearm, carrying a loaded firearm, possession of a firearm in commission of a felony, possession of a large capacity feeding device on four counts, attaching wrong motor vehicle plates, operating an uninsured motor vehicle, and operating an unregistered motor vehicle.

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