Saugus man arrested on multiple drug trafficking, domestic violence charges

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MELROSE — Chief Kevin Faller announced the arrest of a Saugus man on several drug trafficking and domestic violence charges following a police operation over the weekend.

Azer Sarotic, 33, of Saugus, faces a litany of charges including assault and battery on a family or household member, kidnapping, assault and battery with a dangerous weapon (firearm), threatening to commit a crime (murder), witness intimidation, trafficking in crystal methamphetamine, trafficking in fentanyl, trafficking in methamphetamine, and three counts of possession of a firearm without a license (subsequent offense).

The Melrose Police Department responded to a report of a past domestic assault at approximately 10:15 a.m. on March 9.

The victim alleged Sarotic assaulted her overnight, held her at gunpoint, bit, punched, and struck her in the head with a firearm.

Following the report, police went to a Sylvan Street residence before noon to apprehend Sarotic, who initially refused to leave the home.

With Sarotic believed to be armed, police enlisted help from the Northeastern Massachusetts Law Enforcement Council (NEMLEC) SWAT Team and their negotiators.

Sarotic surrendered without further incident upon the arrival of the NEMLEC SWAT Team.

Officers executed a search warrant at the Sylvan Street home, uncovering significant quantities of methamphetamine, crystal methamphetamine, and fentanyl, along with two handguns and a shotgun.

Sarotic was arraigned in Malden District Court on Monday, where he was ordered held without bail pending a 58A dangerousness hearing scheduled for Thursday.

Chief Faller praised the officers and NEMLEC SWAT for their professionalism in peacefully resolving the situation and highlighted the importance of law enforcement training in de-escalation and tactical response.

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