GPD, BCSO cooperate in drug arrests

Published 12:00 am Saturday, January 15, 2000

A cooperative effort between the Butler County Sheriff's Office and the Greenville Police Department has led to several arrests over the past three months for drug-related charges.

Since November 5, the two law enforcement agencies have made a total of 71 cases through both undercover work and through routine patrolling. Greenville Police Chief Lonzo Ingram said that the combined effort is a key to allowing both groups to be most efficient.

"By working together we have been able to keep undercover operations ongoing while also allowing us the manpower to continue making traffic stops and performing our routine patrols. It has given us the manpower we need for extensive investigations without taking men off of the street," Ingram said.

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Both groups have been contributed men and resources to the fight against drugs despite where the setting of the battle may be.

"Our deputies have been working with his (Ingram's) officers within the city and they work with us when we need them out in the county," Butler County Sheriff Diane Harris said. "By doing this we are able to get a lot more accomplished."

Ingram said the results of the concentrated effort can be broken down into two separate endeavors: undercover investigations and drug busts that resulted from law officers on routine beats.

The undercover operation was carried out by members of both agencies and resulted in a total of 36 cases. The effort led to warrants for a total of ten suspects, three of which were brought against juveniles.

Those who have been arrested as a result of the undercover effort are: Steve Lowery, a 21 year-old male of Harlem Street, arrested and charged with distribution of a controlled substance; Michael Haynes, a 31 year-old male of Garfield Street, arrested and charged with one count of distribution and one count of theft of property; Chris Davidson, a 24 year old male of Parmer Street, arrested and charged with two counts of distribution; Derrick Johnson, a 20 year-old male of King Street, arrested and charged with distribution; Fred Crenshaw, a 26 year-old male of Wimberly Street, arrested and charged with possession of a controlled substance; Dwayne Dockery, a 24 year-old male of J & K Trailer Park, arrested and charged with two counts of distribution, one count of possession of marijuana, first degree and one count of possession of drug paraphernalia; Antonio Morris, a 27 year-old male of Perdue Street, arrested and charged with two counts of distribution, one count of possession of a controlled substance and possession of marijuana, first degree.

The juvenile suspects brought about five cases for distribution and one possession case.

Chief Deputy Kenny Harden who, along with GPD Sgt. Randy Courtney, headed up the undercover operation said that the arrests were a result of work since November 5.

"We have been able to execute three search warrants in the last month, seizing drugs, money and guns. We hope to continue seeing the city and county work together to fight drugs," he said.

With the two groups working together on the undercover jobs, it allowed for more drug-related charges to be brought against suspects by deputies and officers on routine patrols.

The BCSO made a total of 15 cases, separate from those undercover cases, since the end of October. The GPD has been able to make 22 cases on drug charges within the city limits.

"These cases are totally separate from our undercover work. Charges have been made for everything from possession to distribution by the men who are out on their routine patrols. If we were not working together we would have to take men off of our undercover team in order to maintain these routine patrols or vice versa. This way both of us keep our men on the street as well as some that are undercover," Harris said.

Ingram said the two agencies have always worked together and plan to continueto do so in the future.

"We have always worked together and have had a good relationship," Ingram said. "This has been a more concentrated effort in order to put a dent into the drug business here in Butler County."

The results of the undercover operations has proven to Harris that this is a relationship that should continue into the future.

"We are still working together and have no intentions of ending the relationship. We have seen how effective it can be in getting more drugs off the streets of the county," she said.