Cortland man enters guilty plea on drug charges

CORTLAND, N.Y. – A Cortland man has entered a guilty plea in connection with a drug raid that happened in January.

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Christopher A. Rivera pleaded guilty to criminal possession of a controlled substance and agreed to a four-year sentence in state prison.

Rivera, 27, was shackled and wearing an orange jumpsuit when he arrived in Cortland County Court Tuesday afternoon.

He was arrested by the Cortland City Police Department on Jan. 22 after police executed a search warrant at a home on Tompkins Street.

During the raid, police found 138 bags of heroin weighing approximately 34 grams, 497 oxycodone pills, 12 grams of cocaine, about 21 grams of MDMA and an unregistered firearm with a defaced serial number.

Addressing Rivera in court Tuesday, Judge William Ames described the deal presented by the district attorney's office as "a very reasonable offer."

Rivera faced previous drug charges in the Bronx in 2010, which landed him five years of felony probation. His arrest in January constituted a violation of his probation.

“Given the extremely large amount of drugs that were found, as well as his previous drug-related conviction, the people feel that a term of state incarceration is the only appropriate sentence,” assistant district attorney Lauren M. Wojnowicz wrote in court documents.

Rivera is scheduled to be sentenced July 7.