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Perez, wife charged for drug possession

Package reportedly containing marijuana delivered to couple's home in Cleveland

DETROIT -- Indians closer Chris Perez and his wife have been charged with misdemeanor counts of drug possession after an investigation opened in response to a shipment of drugs mailed to their rental home on Cleveland's west side.

According to multiple reports, Perez and his wife, Melanie, were served with complaints on Thursday and released on personal bond. They have a court hearing scheduled for 9 a.m. ET on June 19.

"Clearly, we take these matters seriously and are disappointed whenever there is any negative attention brought to the Indians organization or one of our players," Indians general manager Chris Antonetti said. "We understand and respect that there is an ongoing legal process that we will allow to evolve."

Perez's attorney, Terry Gilbert, issued a statement regarding the charges on Friday morning.

"My clients Chris and Melanie Perez are facing low-level misdemeanor possession charges," Gilbert wrote. "These are accusations only. We want to remind people, especially the media, that they have not been found guilty of any crime. They will be entering not guilty pleas. We ask that people not rush to judgment. We are confident of a favorable outcome.

"In the meantime, Chris and Melanie ask that their family's privacy be respected. Chris is eager to return his focus to his team and his family."

A search warrant was issued on the home in Rocky River, Ohio, on Tuesday and the Rocky River police held a news conference Wednesday to discuss the investigation. The police noted that the operation was being handled in conjunction by the Westshore Enforcement Bureau (WEB) and Narcotics Unit, U.S. Postal Investigative Services and the Rocky River Police Department.

According to the WEB report of the search, Perez and his wife were "asked if the home contained any form of contraband, weapons or cash. Chris Perez responded that he had 'personal use' marijuana in the basement and volunteered to direct the officers to the location of it.

"Officers then accompanied Mr. Perez to the basement level, where he pointed out a number of items of paraphernalia along with two separate 'mason' jars containing a green vegetable matter suspected of being marijuana. These items were obviously seized and inventoried."

The police indicated that the illegal substance -- reported to be 163.9 grams (roughly one-third of a pound) of marijuana -- had been delivered to the home via the United States Postal Service.

During Wednesday's news conference, Rocky River police chief Kelly Stillman indicated there had been previous problems at the same address for "quite a volley of incidents," but those matters involved prior tenants.

"There were a lot of things that happened at that home," said Stillman, referring to the time period before the Perezes moved into it. "We've been to that home on numerous occasions."

Perez is currently on the disabled list with a strained right shoulder, suffered May 26 while pitching in Boston. Perez, 27, has converted six of his eight save chances this season while compiling a 4.32 ERA in 17 appearances. He surrendered seven runs in 2 2/3 innings in his final three outings before landing on the DL with the shoulder issue, which was first a problem in Spring Training.

Jordan Bastian is a reporter for Read his blog, Major League Bastian, and follow him on Twitter @MLBastian.
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