Yesterday just after 9:00 pm Trooper Steven Hanafin, assigned to the State Police Andover barracks, was patrolling Route 28 northbound in Lawrence. At that time he noticed a yellow BMW sedan with illegally tinted windows make several marked lane violations. Trooper Hanafin followed the vehicle then activated his emergency lights and attempted to stop the car. While the operator was pulling over Trooper Hanafin noticed the driver and passenger making strange movements, which put him on alert.
After the vehicle stopped Trooper Hanafin approached it identified the operator as MARIO ACOSTA, 23, of Haverhill, and the passenger as a 17-year-old juvenile female. Through subsequent investigation on scene Trooper Hanafin located a Polymer80 9mm handgun and an illegal extended high-capacity magazine loaded with 30 rounds of ammunition.
At that time Trooper Christopher Ryan and Officer Abel Cano, of the Lawrence Police Department, arrived to assist Trooper Hanafin. ACOSTA and the female juvenile were both subsequently placed under arrest and were transported to the Andover barracks for booking. A bail commissioner was contacted and set bail at $25,000 for ACOSTA and $5,000 for the juvenile.
ACOSTA was arraigned today at Lawrence District Court while the juvenile was arraigned at Essex County Juvenile Court. In addition to several motor vehicle violations ACOSTA has been charged with, both suspects were also charged with the following:
- Possession of a Firearm;
- Possession of a Large Capacity Feeding Device; and
- Possession of Ammunition without an FID Card.