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November 10, 2012

Lawrence mom turns in son’s guns, teen arrested

LAWRENCE — A mother brought two unlicensed handguns to the police station last night, leading to her son's arrest on weapons charges.

“I commend the mother for her action,” Lawrence police Chief John Romero said in an interview last night.

At about 6 p.m., Sandra Valentin walked into the police station, accompanied by her 16-year-old daughter, who helped to translate her complaint. Officer Willie Oliveri was later used as a translator during the interview of Valentin.

“This couldn’t have been easy for her. But, she was concerned about the safety of her daughter and absolutely did the right thing here,” the chief said.

She told police that at about 11:30 a.m., while her son was handling a gun in his bedroom, it went off and a bullet went through a wall into his sister’s bedroom, almost striking her. After the incident, the mother had a big fight with her son and told him to get the guns out of the house, according to Romero.

“But later in the day, she found the two guns laying on his bed. She put them in her car and drove to the police station, wanting to give the guns to the police,” he said.

Valentin allowed police to search her vehicle. Lt. James Rasso retrieved from the car a long barrel .44 magnum revolver, fully loaded, and a .22 Luger automatic, according to police.

Detectives went to her home at about 7:30 p.m., where they saw her son, Luis Rosario, out in front of the house and arrested him.

Police sought a search warrant to gather possible evidence at the home last night. State police crime scene personnel responded to the location to assist city police.

Rosario, 18, of 18 Monmouth St., Lawrence, was charged with two counts of illegal possession of a firearm, two counts of illegal possession of ammunition, assault with a deadly weapon (the bullet going through the wall and almost injuring his sister) and discharging a gun within 500 feet of a dwelling.

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