Butler Township Police arrested two people after a firearm was brandished during a dispute. The incident took place around 10:30 am Thursday morning at an apartment at 417 S. Hunter Highway.

Police were called to the residence after the building landlord, Rishi Rakshpal, reported Alex Albert Victoriano, age 25, of that address, engaged in a confrontation with him and pulled a revolver from his waistband and brandished it during the argument. Victoriano had the gun taken away from him by Jonathan G. Vega, age 23, at which time Victoriano grabbed a nearby machete and continued to threaten him. Victoriano then struck Rakshpal in the face several times with his fist.

Police arrived and were detaining Victoriano, when they were alerted that Vega, who also resides at that address, was hiding something. Vega was taken into custody in back of the apartment building just after he had concealed a duffel bag of evidence of guns and drugs.

Police recovered the duffel bag which contained a loaded Colt Trooper MKIII .357 magnum revolver, a Rohm .22 caliber revolver, ammunition and 230 packets of heroin. The Rohm handgun had the serial number obliterated to prevent identification.

The apartment is known to police after previous incidents. Police executed search warrants and found illegal drugs on June 12, 2013 and January 7, 2014, separately arresting two the 2 previous tenants. It also drew the attention of the SPCA after several pit bulls were abandoned after the June 2013 incident. The apartment, which had been shut down in January by Butler Township Code Enforcement, was unoccupied until recently when Vega and Victorino moved in.

Vega was recently arrested by Butler Township Police and the Luzerne County Drug Task Force on October 2, 2014. He was arrested after arriving at a drug deal on E. Chestnut Street in Hazleton. He was found with more than 500 bags of heroin, a stolen handgun, crack and synthetic marijuana. Court records in that case show that Vega posted $50,000 dollars though a bail bondsman.

Victoriano was charged with firearms not to be carried without a license, a felony; terroristic threats, 2 counts of simple assault; which are misdemeanor offense and harassment. He was arraigned by District Judge Michael Dotzel who set his bail at $50,000 straight.

Vega was charged with possessing a firearms with the serial number altered, firearms not to be carried without a license and possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance – all felonies. District Judge Dotzel set Vega’s bail at $250,000 straight. Both were incarcerated at the Luzerne County Prison pending a hearing next week.


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{MEDIA: 1 photo electronically attached}

 Released- 10/18/2014 10:10 pm

Released by: Cpl. William J. Feissner