Nelson Silva, 30, husband of District B city councilor Grisel Silva who is also a constable providing security for Lawrence’s schools, was arrested Saturday night in a police sting.
Capt. Shawn J. Patten said officers went to Walmart, 344 North Broadway, at 9:30 p.m. after a woman called to say a man found her cell phone but was demanding $200 for its return.
Patten said the woman realized she lost the phone at the store and used a friend’s cell phone to text a message to it asking anyone who found it to contact her friend. Te man who found it, identified by police as Silva, demanded $200 in cash for its return, Patten said.
Silva ordered the woman to text him a photograph of the cash to prove she had it.
Police put a sting into motion, first setting up a meeting in another parking lot where officers in unmarked cars were positioned. When Silva arrived, the phone was exchanged for an envelope containing only $21 in cash, Patten said.
After the exchange, Silva drove off but was immediately pulled over by marked cruisers and arrested.
He is charged with theft of lost or mislaid property and released on a summons. He will be arraigned in Salem District Court on a later date.
Silva could be facing additional charges as the investigation continues, police said.
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