The Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office Drug Enforcement Unit and members of local police departments conducted a Drug Round Up today that began at 0530 AM. The Operation has been ongoing since the beginning of January, targeting individuals selling prescription pills illegally. Agents have seized several hundred pills along with marijuana, powder cocaine and crack cocaine during the operation.
Operation Spring Clean is the fourth drug roundup of this type since I have taken office and each operation has been a huge success with Agents arresting nearly 300 suspects for controlled substance violations.
Operation Spring Clean was a collaboration of Drug Enforcement Agents working together with Local Departments and concerned Citizens of Brunswick County. Through surveillance, cooperating informants and controlled buys, agents purchased trafficking amounts of prescription medication from 11 different suspects. Pills that contain an opiate derivative such as Hydrocodone and Oxycodone are charged by weight and qualify for the trafficking opium laws. Each suspect, if found guilty, could receive a mandatory prison sentence ranging from 70 to 279 months in the North Carolina Department of Corrections.
The Round Up began with 44 subjects WANTED with 176 counts total. Out of those 44 subjects, 31 have been successfully taken into custody and transported to the Brunswick County Detention Facility and 3 were already in the Detention Facility on unrelated charges.
There were also 2 additional arrests made with a total of 8 additional charges, either through obtaining evidence through the search of these subjects or serving individuals that already had warrants unrelated to the Round Up.
While taking a subject into custody at a residence off Mill Road in the Ash area, two SKS assault rifles were located in a child’s crib and ammunition, narcotics and drug paraphernalia were located throughout the residence. The female subject in the residence, Courtney Norris, was served with additional charges of child abuse and drug possession.
The Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office investigated 14 prescription medication overdose deaths in 2009 and has investigated 2 so far in 2010. There has been a huge increase in investigations involving prescription medications and seizures within the past two years.
The individuals that are still WANTED and have yet to be served are as follows:
Sharon Lalone W/F 12/23/1975
Malcolm Massey B/M 8/10/1984
Louise Maloney W/F
Khandon O. Frink B/M 9/09/1983
Jaquin K. Bethea B/M 8/29/1969
Joshua Ian Rhue
Antwan Damitri King B/M 2/18/1979
David W. Cuthbert III W/M 03/27/1990
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