|Trinity Standard - Local News
Copyright 2011 - Polk County Publishing Company
Drug buys net 3 suspects
Trinity Standard -
TRINITY – Three area residents were jailed last week on delivery of controlled substance charges following a pair of joint investigations by the Precinct 1 constable’s office and Trinity police. According to Pct. 1 Constable Woody Wallace, Richard “Ricky” Williamson, 51, and David Scruggs, 47, both of Riverside were arrested late Saturday south of Trinity while Jose Cunningham Jr., 19, of Trinity was arrested on the night of Wednesday, Sept. 21, in the Trinity Cove Subdivision. Both arrests came after officers obtained cooperation of two men who agreed to make undercover drug buys, Wallace and Trinity Police Chief Steven Jones obtained the help of the man who made the buys on Saturday while Pct. 1 deputy constables Rusty Barrett and Ricky Hope obtained the help of the man during the Sept. 1 purchase. In both cases, the undercover volunteer was given marked “buy money” to purchase the illegal drugs while officers recorded the purchases and then moved in after they were completed to make the arrests. Wallace noted that in both cases, the undercover operatives agreed to work with police and understood the risk of possible retaliation from area drug dealers. During the incident Saturday, Wallace said the operative managed to purchase five grams of methamphetamines during a meeting that took place on Old Riverside Road (Old Highway 19) just north of the Ben Blair Road intersection. During the drug deal, the methamphetamines were delivered inside a cell phone charger, Wallace said. After the deal, as the two suspects began to drive off, a team of officers moved in to make the arrest. As they approached the suspect’s vehicle, Wallace said they threw most of the marked buy money out of their car. It was subsequently recovered and both Williamson and Scruggs were taken into custody and taken to the Trinity County Jail. Officers involved in the investigation and arrest included Wallace, Jones, TPD Officer Jon Archer, TPD Sgt. Randy Wheeler, TPD Sgt. John Raiford and Deputy Constable Mark Cole. Using information from the arrest, Walker County sheriff’s deputies obtained search warrants for Williamson’s Riverside residence and additional drug-related charges are now pending in that county. The arrest of Cunningham last week occurred after another undercover drug purchase, this time involving crack cocaine. Wallace indicated that once a deal was arranged by telephone, officers moved into place so they could record the purchase using digital video equipment. The undercover operative and suspected dealer each drove to the prearranged location where $120 was exchanged for six rocks of crack cocaine, Wallace said. When the suspected drug dealer left the scene, he was stopped by officers at the Trinity Cove entrance gate where he was arrested. At the time of Cunningham’s arrest, Wallace said two other men, ages 18 and 19, were in the car with him but no charges have been filed against them at this time. He said the matter will be referred to a Trinity County grand jury for review and charges could be filed against the two in the future. Jones, who also assisted with the arrest, said after the suspect was in custody, they received information that he had drugs hidden in a car parked at a Trinity residence. A search of that vehicle lead to the seizure of a small amount of powered cocaine valued at $20 as well as a set of scales commonly used to weigh drugs before their sale. Charges involving that drug discovery were still pending this week. Officer involved in the investigation included Wallace, Jones, Barrett, Hope and Wheeler. Wallace said his department is working not only to arrest local drug dealers, but to seek out and arrest those who come in from other counties to sell narcotics. “We want to send a strong message that it is not okay to deal drugs in Trinity County,” he said. Anyone with information about drugs or other illegal activity is invited to contact Wallace at 594-2122, the Trinity Police Department at 594-2505 or the Trinity County Crime Stoppers at 642-2334.