Four more arrests have been made in Operation Scarecrow, an undercover drug campaign targeting drug sales and distribution in all of Sampson County, bringing the total number arrested to 18 people on more than 80 felony drug warrants in just a week’s time.
The undercover probe initiated by the Sampson County Sheriff’s Special Investigations Division spanned six months, and culminated in the initial arrests last week. Since that time, warrants have been served and suspect after suspect has been brought in by SID agents. The number of suspects taken into custody as part of the “Scarecrow” sting now stands at 18, with the four most recent arrests made Wednesday, according to reports filed Friday at the Sampson County Sheriff’s Office.
Those arrested Wednesday were served a total of 22 felony warrants for cocaine sales and distribution and related charges. They are Mack Felton Owens Jr., 32, of 1100 Autry Mill Road, Autryville; Crystal Alison Cashwell, 30, of 4253 Minnie Hall Road, Autryville; Julia Ann Reyes, 52, of 821 Taylors Bridge Hwy., Clinton; and Thomas Edward Jones, 32, of 202 E. Roseboro St., Roseboro.
According to reports, Owens was charged on warrants with two counts of selling cocaine, two counts of delivering cocaine and two counts of maintaining a dwelling for a controlled substance. He was placed under $42,000 bond. Owens turned himself in to Sampson Sheriff’s authorities Wednesday, as did Cashwell.
Cashwell was charged with two counts of selling cocaine and two counts of delivering cocaine. Her bond was set at $10,000.
Like Owens, Reyes and Jones were both charged with two counts of selling cocaine, two counts of delivering cocaine and two counts of maintaining a dwelling for a controlled substance.
Reyes was arrested at her Taylors Bridge Highway home without incident and placed under $42,000 bond.
Jones was arrested at N.C. 24 and Dowdy Road in the Roseboro area. He received an additional misdemeanor charge of simple possession of marijuana at the time of his arrest. Jones was placed under $44,000 bond for all of the offenses.
Citizen complaints sparked the Scarecrow campaign now resulting in the arrest of residents from throughout the county. Arrests are expected to continue, with dozens anticipated to be brought in to face felony charges.
“All of the buys that the undercover agents made during the investigation are now at the point where warrants are being served,” Cpl. Marcus Smith said last week, upon the beginning of the arrests. “We are expecting numerous arrests to come. They did buys from all areas of the county, so we are expecting a lot more arrests.”
Arrests have been made in various parts of the county so far, including Roseboro, Clinton, Newton Grove, Autryville and the Godwin area. Along with the 82 felony drug charges brought on those arrested, several have received additional felony and misdemeanor charges at the time of their arrest related to additional drugs seized and attempts to elude arresting agents.
Chris Berendt can be reached at 910-592-8137 ext. 121 or via email at email@example.com.