WESTFORD — The following release was shared with WestfordCAT by the Westford Police Department on behalf of the Middlesex County District Attorney’s Office for release and publication.
Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan and Westford Chief of Police Mark Chambers have announced that Daniel Perras, 59 of Easthampton, pled guilty to destruction of evidence and improper disposal of a body in connection with leaving the body of Melissa Mestre on Providence Road in Westford, disposing of her belongings and never notifying authorities of her death.
On Feb. 2, 2019, a Westford resident walking his dog on Providence Road found Melissa Mestre’s body down an embankment on the side of the road. When police arrived, they found Ms. Mestre with obvious signs of death. Ms. Mestre did not have any identification and investigators initially had no information as to who she was, how she died or how she ended up on the side of the road.
During an extensive investigation by the Westford Police Department and Massachusetts State Police, investigators were able to not only identify Ms. Mestre, but also the defendant, Daniel Perras. They learned that Mestre and Perras had recently met and that on Jan. 31, 2019, Perras had picked Mestre up at her home in Springfield.
Perras then drove from Springfield to the Haverhill area where he met with an individual and sold that individual a large quantity of heroin. After that heroin sale, Perras began driving back toward Western Massachusetts.
While driving Perras realized that Mestre had died of a drug overdose. Perras pulled off of the highway onto Boston Road in Westford. Perras drove past the fire station and took multiple turns until he eventually ended up on a secluded area of Providence Road.
There, Perras pulled Mestre’s body out of his car and left it down the embankment on the side of the road. Perras left with Mestre’s belongings, which included her purse and cell phone. Perras never alerted the authorities to Mestre’s death or where he left her.
Investigators were able to track Perras along Route 2 to the French King Bridge in Erving. While at that bridge, Perras disposed of Mestre’s belongings, including her purse and cell phone. Perras then drove to his home.
Perras pled guilty last week in Middlesex Superior Court and was sentenced to seven to eight years in state prison on the charge of destruction of evidence and three years of probation on and after for improper disposal of a dead body.
The prosecutor assigned to this case was Daniel Harren. The victim witness advocate was Anne Foley.