LAURINBURG – Sheriff Ralph Kersey said his office has shut down “major drug operations” in the last week with the help of the community.
The investigations carried out over the past six weeks resulted in four drug-related arrests. Kersey said the arrest were the result of residents tips and complaints about illegal drug activity. The arrests were made between Jan. 20 and Feb. 24.
“Law enforcement can’t do it by ourselves,” Kersey said. “Don’t hesitate to call. You never know what it’s going to lead to.”
The initial arrest came on Jan. 20 when deputies charged 65-year-old Orlando Cruz after a search of a Woodlawn Drive residence.
Kersey said the investigation into Cruz’s activities was made possible through joint efforts with the Laurinburg Housing Authority. Cruz was selling out of an apartment.
Cruz was arrested on five counts of trafficking opium/heroin, possession with intent to sell and deliver a Schedule VI substance, possession with intent to sell and deliver a Schedule II substance, maintaining a dwelling to distribute a controlled substance, and possession of drug paraphernalia.
Cruz received no bond due to the nature of his charges, according to Kersey.
On Feb. 14, the sheriff’s office detective division conducted a search warrant at a house on 10th Street where Johnny Sherman Davenport, 46, was arrested for possession with intent to sell and deliver cocaine, maintaining a dwelling to distribute a controlled substance, and possession of drug paraphernalia. He was placed in the Scotland County Detention Center and received a $25,000 bond.
Davenport previous convictions include possession with intent to sell and deliver and a weapons charge.
On Feb. 24, the sheriff’s office conducted several separate narcotic search warrants after receiving complaints concerning drug deals at a residence on Corona Avenue and another on Beta Street.
During the investigation at a Beta Street residence, Latroy Harris of Peabridge Road was cited for possession of marijuana.
In addition, Glenn L. Harrington, 38, of Corona Avenue was charged with possession of marijuana and maintaining a dwelling for purpose of distributing a controlled substance. He was also served with child support warrants. He was placed in the Scotland County Detention Center under a $28,621 bond. Harrington was convicted of communicating threats and assault on a female in 1996.
Harrington faces other charges stemming from the investigation because the dwelling was in the vicinity of a school.
“I was a blessing for us that school was out,” Kersey said. “It also shows that could happen anywhere,” he added referring to drug den locations.
Assisting with the arrest were the sheriff’s office Emergency Response Team, SERT, along with personnel from the Criminal Investigation Unit Civil/Child Support.
Kersey said that SERT is called in when officers serve warrants to hamper the suspect’s ability to escape.SERT covers the building while narcotics officers carry out the warrant.
The sheriff urged the public to continue report suspicious activity. He said that “the community is our eyes.”
“If I receive a tip from the community, I pass that on to [be investigated],” Kersey said. “Officers will take the information and do undercover work, make purchases from the dealer to establish that the person is a dealer.”
To report activity email Sheriff Kersey at: [email protected] or call the tip line at 910-277-4258.