Grantville seizes illegal materials during the week
by Wes Mayer
Over the last week, while deputies with the Butts County Sheriff’s Office were training with the Grantville Police Department on I-85, officers made a number of traffic stops which led to the seizure of thousands of dollars and a large amount of illegal narcotics.
This last week, deputies with the Butts County Sheriff’s Office set up a schedule to train with the Grantville Police Department’s drug interdiction team within the city limits on I-85, said Grantville Police Chief Doug Jordan. With assistance from these Butts County deputies, authorities successfully made four traffic stops resulting in seizures of illegal materials and arrests during the week.
The week of arrests began on May 26 when Grantville Police Officer William Faulkner and Butts County Deputy Bruce Knight pulled over a vehicle on I-85 for a lane and tag violation, Jordan said. Officers obtained consent to search the vehicle and inside, they discovered a bag containing suspected heroin along with some syringes and needles. The driver, Tyler Drew, 23, of Nebraska, was charged for possession of heroin and was transported to the Coweta County Jail.
On May 28, Grantville Police Officer Michael Mathis and Butts County Deputy Mike Bruce stopped a vehicle for speeding on I-85 northbound. According to Jordan, the driver of the vehicle, Germaine Fairley, told officers he was driving from Florida to Douglasville for a birthday party, and he refused to let officers search his vehicle.
Bruce then retrieved his K-9 unit, Kilo, and walked around the vehicle. Kilo alerted officers to an odor of narcotics, Jordan said. Officers searched the vehicle, and didn’t find any narcotics, but they did find a bag filled with $49,000 in cash. Fairley claimed the cash was not his, so officers seized the bag, Jordan said. Fairley was then cited for speeding and released.
The largest stop occurred around 2:18 p.m. on Thursday when Grantville Officer William Faulkner and Butts County Sgt. Jeff Nix stopped a Ford F-150 traveling southbound on I-85 for failure to maintain lane. Officers met with the driver, Robert Don Bonner, 62, from Florida, and detected an odor of marijuana coming from inside the truck, Jordan said. A passenger, Jeffrey Vincent Driskell, 19, was also in the vehicle.
Officers questioned Bonner about the odor, Jordan said, and he admitted to recently smoking some marijuana. He also said he had a small amount of marijuana in the vehicle and gave consent for officers to search inside. Officers discovered approximately 120 pounds of marijuana, separated in multiple 10-pound bundles, in the back seat. A firearm was also found inside the vehicle. Both Bonner and Driskell were charged for trafficking marijuana, and Bonner was additionally charged for possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime. They were both transported to the Coweta County Jail.
A short time later, around 3:30 p.m., Grantville Officer Timothy Nixon and Butts County Deputy Bruce stopped a Nissan with a Missouri tag for speeding, Jordan said. The driver was identified as Isaac Donald Harris, 34, from Decatur, GA, and officers detected an odor of marijuana coming from inside the vehicle. Officers then made a search and found a large bag containing approximately two pounds of marijuana.
When officers began to place Harris under arrest, however, he took off running toward the woods line, Jordan said. Officers gave Harris commands to stop, but he refused, and officers used their electric stun guns to stop him and take him into custody. He was charged with possession of marijuana, obstruction, failure to maintain lane and impeding the flow of traffic, and he was transported to the Coweta County Jail.
“With Grantville's proximity to the interstate, these drug dealers and criminals have access to our city,” Jordan said. “As chief of police, it is my responsibility to protect the citizens of Grantville and Coweta County as much as I possibly can. With the formation of my drug interdiction team, we will provide a safe environment for our citizens.”