WCSO arrests two in fentanyl, heroin operation

Published 12:56 pm Thursday, December 22, 2022

JONESBOROUGH — A month of work paid off when Washington County Sheriff’s Office investigators made two arrests involving the sale of fentanyl and heroin.
Michael Sumner, 35, Johnson City, and Robert Hipps, 35, Johnson City, were apprehended on Dec. 21. Both men were charged with maintaining a dwelling for controlled substance distribution. Sumner is charged with selling Schedule I drugs.
According to Sheriff Keith Sexton, his department began investigating a residence in the 2300 block of Watauga Road. In a renewed emphasis on the region’s drug crisis, a new division was formed by the sheriff. Investigators in the new division confirmed two purchases of narcotics from Sumner at the Watauga Road location. Sumner told those purchasing that the substance was approximately five grams of fentanyl. Hipps was present during one of the transactions.
“Due to the dangers posed to the community by fentanyl, we responded very quickly,” Sexton said. “We wanted to close out this investigation with a search warrant and arrest to keep fentanyl off the streets.”
Both Sumner and Hipps were apprehended by WCSO without incident and booked into the Washington County Detention Center. Sumner’s bond is set at $50,000. Hipps’ bond is set at $10,000. Both will appear this afternoon in Sessions Court.

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