‘Strike Out’ nets more than a dozen arrests

Published 7:53am Thursday, May 22, 2014

Round ‘em up and book ‘em in.
A large roundup operation conducted by the Carter County Sheriff’s Department Tuesday night and into the early morning hours on Wednesday led to the arrest of more than a dozen men and women on outstanding warrants and criminal court indictments on a variety of charges.
Carter County Sheriff Chris Mathes said the roundup – Operation Strike Out – not only led to the arrest of several wanted persons, but that officers serving the warrants also found two suspected meth labs and confiscated drugs and guns. He said officers also served two search warrants on residences in the county.
Mathes said the goal of the operation was to apprehend individuals wanted on narcotics-related charges as well as charges such as theft and burglary. He said the men and women being sought by the operation were considered “high value targets” due to the nature of the charges they face.
One of the suspected methamphetamine labs reported by officers was at 263 Long Hollow Road. According to police reports, officers responded to that residence as part of Operation Strike Out to apprehend Johnny Ray Odom on an indictment from Criminal Court charging him with promotion of meth manufacture, initiation of process to manufacture meth and felony possession of drug paraphernalia.
CCSD Sgt. Harmon Duncan, of the Special Operations Division, said in his report on Odom’s arrest that when the homeowner learned the nature of Odom’s charges, she “asked that officers search the house and property to assure there was nothing to endanger her children.”
Duncan said that when officers searched the property, they found a “burn barrel” in the yard containing evidence of a methamphetamine cook along with drug paraphernalia. Odom was then charged with an additional count each of initiation of process to manufacture meth and felony possession of drug paraphernalia.
Mathes said a second meth lab was found at a residence on Dock Fields Road on Buck Mountain.
“We actually conducted a traffic stop on a vehicle that was headed to that residence right before it got there,” Mathes said. He said that when officers searched the vehicle, they found pseudoephedrine, which is used in the manufacture of methamphetamine.
Mathes said that charges relating to the suspected lab on Dock Fields Road and the traffic stop are pending at this time.
“We will probably be taking that to the grand jury for indictments,” he said.
Search warrants were executed at 809 S Second St. and 123 Jackson Ave. as part of Operation Strike Out. Mathes said guns, crack cocaine and marijuana were seized from the residence on South Second Street, and that marijuana was seized from the residence on Jackson Avenue. He said that indictments will be sought related to the items confiscated from those two residences.
The following individuals were arrested as part of Operation Strike Out:
• Logan Taylor, 21, Midnight Drive, Elizabethton, charged with theft over $1,000;
• Derrick Wilson, 20, Highway 91, Elizabethton, charged with theft over $1,000;
• Donna Scalf, 43, West Elk Avenue, Elizabethton, charged with sale of Schedule III narcotics;
• April Campbell, 33, Buck Mountain, Roan Mountain, – charged with promotion of meth manufacture, initiation of a process to manufacture meth, maintaining a dwelling where narcotics are manufactured;
• Derek Pritchard, 28, Old Highway 19E, Roan Mountain, charged with failure to appear on narcotics related charges;
• Nathaniel Gibson, 31, State Line Road, Elizabethton, charged with failure to appear on narcotics related charges;
• Johnnie Russ, 37, charged with failure to appear on narcotics related charges;
• Edwin F. Main, 54, Highway 321, Butler, charged with promotion of meth manufacture;
• Rickey McKinney, 56, Simerly Creek Road, charged with sale of untaxed liquor;
• Junior Tapp, 59, Lamont Street, Johnson City, charged with theft over $500;
• Jessica Peters, 24, Amherst Circle, Johnson City, sale of Schedule VI Narcotics;
• Tara Carden, 29, Maple Street, Elizabethton, charged with initiation of a process to manufacture methamphetamine, promotion of methamphetamine manufacture, possession of Schedule IV, possession of Schedule IV, possession of drug paraphernalia;
• Billy Johnson, 37, Buck Mountain Road, Roan Mountain, charged with initiation of a process to manufacture methamphetamine, maintaining a dwelling where narcotics are manufactured or sold;
• Heather Birchfield, 28, Buck Mountain Road, Roan Mountain, charged with possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of Schedule VI narcotics, promotion of methamphetamine manufacture;
• Robert Webster, 27, 809 S. Second St., Elizabethton, charged with maintaining a dwelling where narcotics are manufactured or sold, possession Schedule VI narcotics, possession Schedule II narcotics for resale; and
• Johnny Ray Odom, 43, 263 Long Hollow Road, Elizabethton, charged with initiation of a process to manufacture methamphetamine, promotion of methamphetamine manufacture, felony possession of drug paraphernalia.
Mathes said several individuals are still being sought by his department. He asked anyone with information a to call the tips hotline at 542-2350, or the Sheriff’s Department at 542-1845: Angela Ashley, Joshua Wade Ray, Albert Daniel Hawks II, Leonard Arnold, Nicole Renee Edwards, John W. Wilson, Onda L. Wilson and Caleb Edwards.

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