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Prescription Drug Investigation Nets Four, Police Looking for Two More

July 24, 2008

By David Allen, The Shelby Star, N.C.

Jul. 24–Updated 3:47 p.m.:

The Cleveland County Sheriff’s Office along with the State Bureau of Investigation made it a mission about four months ago to target prescription pill pushers and poppers.

The operation has hit hard –four arrests this week, two other suspects and seizures of $33,000 in possible drug money and more than 1,000 pills.

But officials are still on the hunt for more.

“There will be more arrests,” said Lt. Joel Shores, who heads the sheriff’s office narcotics division. “We’ve been hitting crack houses, meth houses, and finding a lot of prescription medications. Come to find out a lot of people are really trying to get a hold of the medication, especially the pain medication.”

Hundreds of Xanax pills. Enough Hydrocodone to last months. Synthetic opium possession charges. How are suspects getting their drugs?

‘Doctor shopping’

For one, there are those who steal from their own parents.

“We’ve had people that are caretakers of their parents that will go get their parent’s medications filled, sell half of it and only give their parent half of it,” Shores said.

Another method, “doctor shopping,” involves timing shifts at the hospital to land a different doctor –and an additional prescription.

“They were going in at different shifts complaining of the same symptoms to try and get this pain medication,” said Shores. “Finding loopholes. What we’re getting is people going around to different doctors getting five or six prescriptions.”

Shores sits on a task force that intends to do something about the problem.

A solution?

“The medical community has started seeing it’s a problem,” Shores said.An inter-business system that could track filled prescriptions might catch offenders using multiple pharmacies to rack up on drugs, he said.

Currently, a red flag is only shot up when someone tried to fill duplicate prescriptions at the same pharmacy. With a new system, more potential criminal activity could be spotted, Shores said.

Word-of-mouth tips and informants help, too.

“For a lot of them, we’re using informants to go purchase who are willing to testify,” Shores said. “Through the use of informants, we’re able to do this.”

The following suspects have been recently arrested on prescription drug-related charges:

Amy Lineberger Davis, 116 E. Zion Church Road

Jackie Lineberger Black, 116 E. Zion Church Road

Jerry Martin, 1904 Sulphur Springs Road

Floyd Dean Smith, 122 W. Double Shoals Road

The Cleveland County Sheriff’s Office is seeking the following suspects:

Lewis K. Archie, 234 Roseborough Road

Eric Scott Turner, 6710 Casar Road

From the Sheriff’s Office (1:58 p.m.)

About four months ago, the Sheriff’s Office Narcotics Division along with the State Bureau of Investigation became an operation to target those who are selling prescription medication.

The investigation consisted of using confidential informants to purchase the medication and the execution of four search warrants.

The investigation has led to the arrest of four individuals and the Sheriff’s Office is currently looking for two other suspects. More arrests are pending as the investigation is ongoing.

The investigation has yielded the seizure of the following:

$33,042 cash

775 Xanax

172 Hydrocodone

113 Oxycodone

2 Methadone

6 Aderall

27 Ativan

20 Morphine patches

Suspect 1: Amy Lineberger Davis

116 E. Zion Church Road

Shelby, NC

Charges:

1. Three counts of possession with intent to sell and deliver schedule IV substances

2. Two counts of sell and delivery of schedule IV substances

3. Possession with intent to sell and deliver schedule II substances

4. Sell and delivery of schedule II

5. Possession with intent to sell and deliver marijuana

6. Sell and deliver of marijuana

Davis’ bond was set at $100,000 secure.

Suspect 2: Jackie Lineberger Black

116 E. Zion Church Road

Shelby, NC

Charges:

1. Three counts of possession of schedule II

2. Possession of schedule IV

3. Possession of marijuana

Black’s bond was set at $5,000 secure.

Suspect 3: Jerry Martin

1904 Sulphur Springs Road

Shelby, NC

Charges:

1. Trafficking in opium

2. Two counts of possession with intent to sell and deliver schedule

3. Two counts of sell and deliver of schedule II

4. Possession with intent to sell and deliver schedule IV

Martin’s bond was set at $50,000 secure.

Suspect 4: Floyd Dean Smith

122 W. Double Shoals Road

Shelby, NC

1. Trafficking in opium

Smith’s bond was set at $50,000 secure.

The Sheriff’s Office is currently seeking the following two suspects. Anyone with information concerning their whereabouts should contact the Sheriff’s Office at 704-484-4822.

Suspect 5: Lewis K. Archie

234 Roseborough Road

Grover, NC

Charge:

1. Trafficking in opium

Suspect 6: Eric Scott Turner

6710 Casar Road

Lawndale, NC

Charges:

1.Trafficking in opium

2. Possessing with intent to sell and deliver schedule III

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Copyright (c) 2008, The Shelby Star, N.C.

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