Garland Fire Department

Garland Firefighter, 2 Sons Arrested on Drug-Related Charges: Police

A Garland firefighter and his two sons are facing drug-related charges after they were arrested Thursday at their home located in a drug-free zone, across from a school, police say.

Merrill Balanciere Sr., 57, and Merrill Balanciere Jr., 21, were arrested on a charge of possession of alprazolam — a prescription drug used to treat anxiety disorders and known under the brand name Xanax. Christian Balanciere, 17, was charged with possession of drug paraphernalia, authorities said.

The Garland SWAT team raided their home in the 1110 block of Glouchester Drive early Thursday morning.

Balanciere Sr. has worked in multiple areas of the fire department for 26 years, but was currently assigned a role as a public information officer and fire inspector in the fire marshal's office.

The fire department said in a written statement Thursday evening that a separate investigation is being conducted into Balanciere Sr. and his actions.

Bond information was not immediately available, and it was unknown whether the three were represented by an attorney.

Contact Us