ELIZABETHTOWN — A joit operation among several law enforcement agencies resulted in the arrest of 11 individuals who are now facing numerous drug charges and/or a variety of other charges.
According to Bladen County Sheriff Jim McVicker, the operation took place last week in Clarkton and East Arcadia after residents in those areas complained about drug activity.
The operation brought together the Bladen County Sheriff’s Office, Columbus County Sheriff’s Office, Pender County Sheriff’s Office, FBI Safe Streets Taskforce, Drug Enforcement Agency, Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms, and the North Carolina Alcohol Law Enforcement Branch of the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation.
Antonio Levon Graham, 40, of Riegelwood, who was arrested and charged with possession with intent to manufacture/sell/deliver cocaine; possession of cocaine; maintaining a vehicle for the purpose of keeping and selling controlled substances; carrying a concealed weapon; fictitious registration and no insurance.
He is being held in the Bladen County Detention Center under a $52,500 bond.
David Dean Bowen, 59, also known as “Sambo,” of Riegelwood, was arrested and charged with possession of cocaine; and possession of drug paraphernalia. “Sambo’s” is a documented illegal open-air alcohol and narcotics distribution outlet located on Carter Road in East Arcadia.
Ricky Butler II, of Whiteville, was arrested on three outstanding warrants for assault with a deadly weapon and is being held in the Bladen County Detention Center under a $2,500 bond.
Deandre Robbins, of Riegelwood, was charged with possession of marijuana; and ossession of drug paraphernalia.
Multiple persons were also charged in the Clarkton area over the past week including:
Susan Montgomery, of Clarkton, was charged with possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Stephanie Johnson, of Clarkton, was charged with possession of marijuana.
John Jarmon, of Clarkton, was charged with possession of marijuana.
Jackie Dixon, of Clarkton, was charged with possession of drug paraphernalia.
Sheldon Morgan, of Leland, was charged with driving while license revoked.
Reuben Harrelson Jr., of White Oak, was charged with driving while license revoked.
Ronald Goins, of Whiteville, was charged with fictitious registration and no liability insurance.
“When we receive complaints from the community we try to respond,” said McVicker. “These arrests were the direct result of complaints from citizens who want their streets safe. This type of aggressive street level enforcement requires a lot of manpower and that is why we seek help from multiple agencies when we begin this type of operation.”
Sheriff McVicker said this type of drug interdiction would continue in areas identified by citizens and by increased observation by both uniform and undercover officers.