Recent drug investigations and operations by local authorities lead to multiple arrests.
Stephens County Sheriff Randy Shirley said the arrests all happened between last Wednesday and Friday in unrelated incidents.
First on Friday, Shirley said Mountain Judicial Circuit N.C.I.S. Drug Team agents acted on information that a man was transporting methamphetamine from the Tower Road area of Avalon to the Oak Valley Road area of Stephens County.
“The Stephens County Sheriff’s Office did a perimeter surveillance of the Tower Road house,” said Shirley. “Once the vehicle moved, the N.C.I.S. team took over surveillance of the vehicle and followed it over to Oak Valley Road, where it was subsequently stopped.”
Shirley said authorities found a large quantity of methamphetamine, along with digital scales and packaging materials that both had residue on them during a search of the vehicle and its driver, 33-year-old Russell Pruitt of Avalon.
The sheriff said Pruitt was charged with one count of Possession of Methamphetamine with Intent to Distribute.
Shirley said further charges are forthcoming.
He said NCIS agents had received information that Pruitt was using, transporting, and distributing meth in and around north Georgia.
In a second incident, Shirley said authorities were conducting surveillance on a Richardson Street residence last Wednesday in connection to reports of ongoing drug activity in that area.
Shirley said during that surveillance operation, agents saw a vehicle leaving the residence with suspected drug dealers inside.
“Once the vehicle left the residence and traveled down Mize Road, it was stopped,” said Shirley. “After performing an open-air search by the K-9 unit from HabershamCounty, they received a positive indication that drugs were inside the vehicle.”
Shirley said a search of the vehicle led to the discovery of about $3,500 in methamphetamine, a quantity of prescription pills, and packaging materials.
The sheriff said that search led to the arrests of 20-year-old Joseph David Cappa and 41-year-old William Curtis Griffin, both of Toccoa, on one count of Trafficking in Methamphetamine, though additional charges are forthcoming.
Sheriff Shirley said authorities then went back and searched the Richardson Street residence later that night.
“As a result of that search, they found a large quantity of methamphetamines with a street value of about $3,000, a quantity of marijuana, prescription medication, 3 firearms, digital scales, and packaging materials,” said Shirley.
Shirley said that search led to the arrest of three people.
He said 17-year-old Curtland Douglas Griffin and 23-year-old Joseph Whitehead, both of Toccoa, were both charged with one count of Possession with Intent to Distribute Methamphetamine, one count of Possession with Intent to Distribute Marijuana, one count of Possession with Intent to Distribute a Schedule Three Narcotic, and three counts of Possession of a Firearm During the Commission of a Crime.
Meanwhile, Shirley said 39-year-old Misti Dawn Caudell of Toccoa was charged with one count of Possession with Intent to Distribute Methamphetamine, one count of Possession with Intent to Distribute Marijuana, and one count of Possession of a Firearm During the Commission of a Crime.
Finally, in a third incident, Shirley said that authorities in Habersham County arrested 25-year-old Rebecca Lillian Wagner of Clarkesville in culmination of an investigation into forging prescriptions.
The sheriff said Wagner was charged in Stephens County with one count of Attempting to Obtain a Controlled Substance by Fraud or Forgery in relation to a forged prescription she attempted to have filled at a Toccoa pharmacy.
Shirley said Wagner will also face charges in Habersham County.