Pocahontas Sheriff’s Department leads big drug bust

Marlinton, W.Va. – The Pocahontas County Sheriffs Department, assisted by the West Virginia State Police and federal agents, made a major drug bust on Saturday.

Sheriff David Jonese describes the investigation leading up to Saturday’s raids.

“The operation Saturday night was a culmination of about seven to eight months of undercover investigation by the Sheriff’s Department,” he said. “We had been fortunate to bring in an undercover police officer. Got this officer tracking some small time movers and distributors of pills and marijuana. Once this individual got embedded with these people, we managed to follow the leads and the chain from one level to the next level up the chain to the actual distributors and the transporters into the county.”

Jonese talks about the day of the arrests.

“On Saturday morning, about two o’clock in the morning, we all gathered,” he said. “It was the Sheriff’s Department because the officer – the lead officer – was Sheriff’s Department. We had two officers helping from the West Virginia State Police and we had three federal agents from surrounding counties also assist us in this. We began raiding – conducting our drug raid – about 3:30 in the morning. It continued throughout Saturday. While everyone was at the Roadkill Festival, we were out, about the county, making arrests.”

“We ended up arresting eight of the larger distributors in the lower end of the county. We were able to confiscate some pretty serious drugs – heroin; methamphetamine; of course, prescription medications, as well. We were able to confiscate that and take that off the street.”

“Best I can tell you, at this time, without telling you too much information, is several ounces, along with a lot of pre-packaged stamps. So, a total quantity, I will be able to put that together when we finish processing all the evidence. But, for now, it was a very sizable amount.”

Saturday’s drug raids were focused in the Marlinton area.

“There were various locations,” said Jonese. “One of the primary ones came out of Campbelltown. That got the bulk of the drugs and the personnel. We also were up on Brownsburg. Were were up on Price Hill, Throughout other areas – lower areas of the county.”

“Everything went off without a hitch. There was no danger. There was no officers put in jeopardy and everything worked as clockwork. So, it was a very successful night for the department and very successful in making this county safe from the drugs they were about to put out on the street.”

The police charged Teresa Teter with 15 counts of Possession With Intent To Deliver A Controlled Substance; Kim Hissom with one count of Possession With Intent To Deliver A Controlled Substance; George Gary Hissom with one count of Possession With Intent To Deliver A Controlled Substance; Kristopher D. Nutter with four counts of Possession With Intent To Deliver A Controlled Substance and two counts of Conspiracy; Charlie Fogus with one count of Possession With Intent To Deliver A Controlled Substance and Randall Bennett with one count of Conspiracy.

The sheriff anticipates more charges and more arrests.

“The results of this, though, are not complete,” said Jonese. “It’ going to be far-reaching. We’re going to be continuing, with the help of the federal agents, to track this farther up the chain and it’ll expand farther out. There’ll be a lot more charges coming forward and a lot more arrests are going to be associated with this here, in the future – the very near future. So, it’s an ongoing investigation. It is going to fall under federal jurisdiction. So, we’re hopefully going to make a very good lick on this and be able to make it stick good this time.”

Senator Joe Manchin called the sheriff to offer assistance from Washington, D.C.

“Sheriff, Joe Manchin,” he said. “I was just calling. We talked before and I know you’re doing a heck of a job fighting this thing and I just want to make sure that, anything you think we can do and bring attention toward the State Police; everybody else that could be of help or anything here in Washington – I’m more than happy to do that. But, I just appreciate the hard work. If you need anything, call my office. But Dave, thank you so much. Keep doing the good work, buddy.”

Story By

Heather Niday

Heather is our Program Director and Traffic Manager. She started with Allegheny Mountain Radio as a volunteer deejay. She then joined the AMR staff in February of 2007. Heather grew up in the Richmond, Virginia, area and now lives in Arbovale, West Virginia with her husband Chuck. Heather is a wonderful flute player, and choir director for Arbovale UMC. You can hear Heather along with Chuck on Tuesday nights from 6 to 8pm as they host two hours of jazz on Something Different.

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