Former Oakland pharmacist convicted of firearm charges
A federal jury on Tuesday convicted a former Oakland pharmacist on two firearm charges stemming from an April 2009 drug bust in Homestead that led to a search of his home.
Raymond J. Zareck, 56, who has a prior felony conviction, claimed that the shotgun police found in his home belonged to his brother, Ronald, who had inadvertently left it there a decade earlier.
Prosecutors argued that ownership of a firearm isn't a prerequisite to possessing one under the two laws that prohibit drug abusers and convicted felons from possessing firearms. A 12-member jury agreed.
U.S. District Judge Joy Flowers Conti scheduled Zareck's sentencing for March 15.
Zareck was arrested during a drug bust at The Waterfront in Homestead. During the bust, police noticed a fuse coming from the center console of Zareck's car and discovered it was connected to a homemade explosive.
Homestead police filed state charges, which are pending, against Zareck in connection with the explosives and drug paraphernalia.
Zareck filed a federal lawsuit against Homestead police Officers Matthew Fusco and James Wintruba, claiming that they arrested him without cause and beat him at the police station when he refused to become an informant.
Conti ruled before the trial that the arrest and subsequent search warrant were valid.
Fusco and Wintruba admit there was a fight at the station, but they say it started when Zareck tried to swallow eight oxycodone pills, two rocks of crack and seven stamp bags of heroin confiscated during his arrest.
Brian Bowling is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-325-4301 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Linebacker Harrison coming along slowly since return to Steelers
- Steelers notebook: Shazier returns just in time
- Man robbed, shot in East Liberty
- Script is it: Classic Pitt helmet design to return
- Pens look to buck shots, goals trend
- Police investigating 2 shootings in Washington County
- Corbett, Wolf resort to sticks, stones to attract attention
- Pitt puts focus to test in jumbled ACC Coastal race
- Lower Burrell man charged with shoplifting
- Penguins notebook: Carcillo has no hard feelings after failing to make roster
- Penn State seeks recruiting win in ‘whiteout’ game