Springfield police arrest man with machine gun, large quantity of drugs

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SPRINGFIELD — Springfield Police Department’s C3 Metro Unit officers arrested a man Thursday morning after witnessing a drug transaction and seizing a machine gun and a significant amount of narcotics.

At around 9:55 a.m., officers patrolling Salem Street and Spring Street spotted what appeared to be a drug deal.

When they approached, the suspect, identified as 29-year-old Jose Sandoval-Baez, attempted to flee but was apprehended after finding his escape blocked by a locked fence on the 0-100 block of Spring Street.

A search of Sandoval-Baez’s backpack revealed an illegal firearm equipped with a sear-selector or Glock-switch, converting it into a fully automatic machine gun, and loaded with 28 rounds.

Additionally, officers found a trafficking weight of crack-cocaine, 40 bags of heroin, and later, another eight bags of heroin on his person, alongside nearly $1,100 in cash.

Sandoval-Baez, who has two prior convictions for heroin distribution, is now facing multiple charges, including firearm violation with two prior violent/drug crimes, trafficking in cocaine, possession of a loaded machine gun, and several other firearm and drug-related offenses.

The Springfield Police Department continues to combat illegal firearms and drug trafficking in the city, highlighting the success of the C3 units in addressing violent and drug-related crimes.

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