The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office broke up a drug distribution ring recently, making five arrests as part of a sting operation.
Agents with the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office Special Investigations Division (SID) began working in April of this year on a drug complaint revolving around the distribution of cocaine in and around Douglas County, Sgt. Jesse Hambrick said in a release.
Justin Harrell and Curtis Chism were identified as being involved in the distribution ring, Hambrick said.
During April and May operatives with the Special Investigations Division were able to purchase cocaine on two separate occasions from Harrell, Hambrick said.
“Good investigative hard work allowed the Special Investigations Division to identify the supplier of these cocaine purchases from Justin Harrell as Curtis Chism,” Hambrick said.
Hambrick said an operation was put in place May 9 to execute the arrest of Harrell and Chism for the violation of the Georgia Controlled Substances Act.
“As agents with the Special Investigations Division and Crime Suppression Unit set up surveillance to arrest both individuals, it appeared that there was a drug transaction between Harrell and Chism,” Hambrick said. “They both left the scene in separate vehicles and both were stopped with the assistance of the Crime Suppression Unit (CSU) and were arrested.”
McKenzie Jordan, of Douglasville, was also arrested on the traffic stop with Chism.
Search warrants were prepared and executed against both Harrell and Chism’s address located in Douglas County, Hambrick said.
“Marijuana and drug related objects were located in Harrell’s residence,” Hambrick said. “The search warrant against the residence belonging to Chism yielded cocaine and drug related objects as well as two other individuals who were in possession of illegal narcotics at the time the search warrant was executed.”
Hambrick said the two individuals were identified as Tyler Brantley and Kenneth Wooten, both of Douglasville.
Harrell was charged with two counts of selling cocaine, two counts of use of a communications device to facilitate a drug transaction, possession of felony marijuana with the intent to distribute, possession of drug related objects, and probation violation.
Chism was charged with conspiracy to sell cocaine and possession of cocaine with the intent to distribute as well as drug related objects.
Jordan was charged with conspiracy to sell cocaine and possession of less than one ounce of marijuana.
Brantley was charged with possession of cocaine and possession of drug related objects.
Wooten was charged with possession of cocaine and possession of drug related objects.
In an unrelated case, members of the Douglas County Crime Suppression Unit were working in the area of Highway 78 East of Douglasville on May 17, 2018.
Hambrick said Deputy Ryan Quibell noticed two vehicles meeting in the parking lot of a local convenience store and appeared to conduct what he thought was a drug transaction.
“After approaching the two vehicles in his patrol car, one of the vehicles fled and Quibell pursued while giving out the description of the other car to responding officers. For safety reasons Deputy Quibell terminated the chase and responded back to the area where he saw the drug transaction take place,” Hambrick said.
Deputy Fields located the second vehicle traveling on Highway 78 in Douglasville and performed a traffic stop on that vehicle, Hambrick said. The driver, Doyle Mooney, consented to a search of his vehicle and Methamphetamine was recovered from a pill bottle with his name located on the pill bottle label.
Hambrick said an outstanding warrant was also identified for the passenger of the vehicle, Steven Ridge, and he was arrested for that outstanding warrant.
“During this arrest Deputy Quibell and Deputy Fields discussed the description of the car that ran from Deputy Quibell moments prior,” Hambrick said. “Deputy Fields remembered having seen a very similar car earlier in the Regency Mobile Home Community. Deputy Fields drove to that neighborhood and located what he believed to be the vehicle and noticed that it smelled of burning marijuana. There was also a strong odor of marijuana coming from the modular home.”
A search warrant was prepared by members of the Special Investigations Division and executed against the residence and it yielded Xanax tablets, marijuana, cocaine, amphetamine tablets, crack cocaine, baggies and digital scales and two loaded handguns, Hambrick said. The driver of the vehicle that ran was identified as Lavern Mark Vereen, according to Hambrick. Another resident of the modular home, Michelle Denise Williams, was also arrested for drug related charges as a result of the execution of the search warrant.
Vereen, of Douglasville, was charged with fleeing and attempting to elude along with numerous felony drug related charges and being in possession of a firearm during the commission of a felony drug crime.
Williams was charged with possession of cocaine.
Mooney, of Douglasville, was charged with possession of Methamphetamine.
Ridge of Temple, was arrested for an outstanding warrant from Paulding County.
“Both of these cases are good examples of members of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office working with members of the community to identify and address concerns about the distribution of drugs in the community,” Hambrick said. “There are several ways to provide information to the Sheriff’s Office about concerns in the community. Concerned citizens can remain anonymous and can contact the Sheriff’s Office by phone, email, or even the use of the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office phone app can be used to get information to the Sheriff’s Office.”