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Over a Dozen Arrested in Methamphetamine Operation

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LAWTON Okla_ A suspected methamphetamine pipeline in Lawton was dismantled Friday in an early morning drug raid.

In a team effort, the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics, Lawton police and the Comanche County Sheriff's Office searched for 18 suspected drug dealers. More than a dozen were taken into custody in a rude awakening, when officers came knocking before sunrise.

By the dozens, officers stormed in and made their presence known. Suspected drug dealers were taken from their homes one by one in the early morning hours.

"Today was about good verses evil," OBN Director Darrell Weaver said.

"We feel like we're fighting the devil," Comanche County Sheriff Ken Stradley said. "I call it the devil's candy, this meth."

"We were able to take down 13 of the targets we were looking for," LPD Chief James Smith said.

Weaver said some of these suspects were still barefoot in their night clothes. He said they may have looked or claimed to be innocent, but they've got reason to believe otherwise.

"Everyone thinks they're innocent when we go knocking on their door at 6:00 in the morning, Weaver said. "Everyone asks ‘Why are you here? What are you here for?' We get that quite a bit."

He said people like those they arrested today are far from innocent and are extremely dangerous.

"There are some that are a higher level of bad," Weaver said. "There are some people that will shoot, that will stab that will kill you, and we believe this is one of those groups that will do that."

Friday morning, several agencies swarmed a Lawton business in search of drugs and their dealers. While they didn't say exactly what they found inside, they did say they made a disturbing discovery.

"Well you see some of these types of shrines," Weaver said. "It's hard to tell what their intent is. I know personally, it's spooky. The things that are hanging on their walls are demonic. Standing there, I thought to myself ‘I've just got to get out of there.' I'm not sure what they're worshiping, but I didn't feel good about it."

Weaver said this group is willing to do what they need to do to protect what has become their livelihood. He said they will go to extremes to hide their illegal activity, even behind business fronts.

"The love of money is the root of all evil," Weaver said, "And there is a lot of economic gain to be made by selling these types of quantities of methamphetamine. So, when you have that type of quantity of drugs, you're going to have a lot of cash. Often, you'll see drug offenders have legit businesses, but they use those to launder money."

Comanche County Sheriff Kenny Stradley said wherever drug dealers are, they hope to catch them and put a dent in drugs and in crime.

"We're trying to get to the top of the mountain of meth and drug control, Stradley said, "And what come off that are your homicides, your robberies, and your burglaries. So, we are trying to take down the mountain. It's a tough job, but with every piece, we're a little closer."

Weaver said as long as these suspected dealers try to sell drugs, officers will be lurking in the shadows, watching and waiting to make their move.

"Most importantly, it's going to send a shock wave through this area," Weaver said. "Hey, we're out here, and we're not going to retreat."

 

Lawton Police PIO Captain Craig Akard released the names of those who were sought out and arrested in Friday's operation. Mug Shots of these individuals can be obtained here.

Ronnie Carter

Jimmie Hinson

John Hinson

Robyn Hinson

Anthony Martinez

Frederick Martinez

Joseph McCarthy

Mike Nash

Dawn Nye

Alejandro Olivio

Markus Pangus

Amanda Smith

Seth Speed

Wendy Truman

Florentino Villanueva, Jr.

David Villanueva

The following individuals were arrested during the operation due to outstanding arrest warrants unrelated to this investigation.

Francis McCarthy

John Saign

Charlene Killsfirst-Barr

Kelly Jean Ragsdill

 

 

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