DOBSON — Drug busts can occur through traffic stops or searches of homes, and the latest round of major arrests by the Surry County Sheriff’s Office involved a combination of both.
As a result, five people have been jailed under large secured bonds — $4 million in one case — on trafficking charges involving fentanyl, methamphetamine, heroin, cocaine, marijuana and other illegal substances, according to an announcement from Sheriff Steve Hiatt.
The operation unfolded last week, beginning with vehicle stop conducted by the Sheriff’s Office Narcotics Division which in turn led to the execution of search warrants at two addresses, 139 Vance St. in Dobson and 104 Windover Drive, Pinnacle.
During the vehicle stop last Tuesday, which occurred on McKinney Road just outside the Mount Airy city limits, detectives located trafficking amounts of fentanyl, methamphetamine, oxycodone, Xanax, marijuana and a Smith and Wesson revolver.
Two people were arrested as a result:
• Marcus Clark Lawson, 31, of the Vance Street residence in Dobson, is charged collectively with violations linked to the search there and the traffic stop including nine counts of trafficking opium or heroin; two counts each of trafficking methamphetamine and possession with intent to manufacture/sell/deliver Schedule IV controlled substance;
Also, one count each of possession with intent to manufacture/sell/deliver a Schedule I controlled substance, possession with intent to manufacture/sell/deliver a Schedule II controlled substance, possession with intent to manufacture/sell/deliver schedule IV controlled substance, felonious possession of a Schedule VI controlled substance, possession with intent to manufacture/sell/deliver cocaine, maintaining a drug vehicle and possession of a firearm by a felon.
Lawson was jailed under a $3.8 million secured bond.
• Lela Noella Shipman, 40, of 241 Tesh St., Mount Airy, is accused of two counts of conspiring to traffick opium or heroin and with being a fugitive from justice from another jurisdiction. Her bond was set at $120,000, secured.
During the search of the Vance Street home, detectives allegedly located trafficking amounts of heroin, fentanyl, methamphetamine, crack-cocaine, cocaine, psilocybin mushrooms, synthetic THC/wax, marijuana, Xanax and assorted drug paraphernalia. Two additional people were arrested:
•Rebecca Marie Dryer, 40, of 139 Vance St., is facing three counts of conspiring to trafficking opium or heroin; two counts each of trafficking opium or heroin and maintaining a drug vehicle/dwelling; and one count each of conspiring to traffick methamphetamine and manufacturing a Schedule I controlled substance. Dryer’s secured bond was set at $1,125,000.
• Jerwin Kai Dobson, 32, of 139 Vance St., is charged with two counts of trafficking opium or heroin and one count each of conspiring to traffick opium or heroin, possession of drug paraphernalia and resisting a public officer. Dobson was incarcerated under a $100,000 secured bond.
On Wednesday, the home of Manuel Clark Borders Jr., 53, on Windover Drive in Pinnacle was searched, which allegedly reaped trafficking quantities of fentanyl, methamphetamine, cocaine, 21-plus pounds of marijuana, assorted drug paraphernalia and five different firearms.
• Charges against Borders include two counts each of trafficking opium or heroin, trafficking methamphetamine and trafficking marijuana; and one count each of possession of cocaine, possession of a stolen firearm, possession of a firearm by a felon and possessing drug paraphernalia.
Borders was held under a $4 million secured bond.
All five defendants were still behind bars at last report and are scheduled to appear in Surry District Court on Sept. 27.
The execution of the two search warrants involved a cooperative effort, according to Hiatt.
Sheriff’s Office personnel were assisted by the Dobson Police Department, Pilot Mountain Police Department, Mount Airy Police Department, Department of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) and the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation.
“The great working relationship between the law enforcement agencies in the county is helping to combat drug use and trafficking within Surry County,” Hiatt said in a statement.