29 sought in Pike roundup

Posted on May 27, 2011 | Comments Off

29 sought in Pike roundup

PIKEVILLE – An Operation UNITE investigation into the illegal sale of prescription medications in Pike County has resulted in arrest warrants for 29 individuals.

UNITE detectives, with assistance from the Kentucky State Police and Pike County Sheriff’s Office, attempted to arrest the suspects in a roundup conducted from the Pikeville Expo Center Friday, May 27.

The roundup was observed by a crew from BBC News who were in southern and eastern Kentucky doing a story on the prescription drug epidemic.

Friday’s roundup was the culmination of an approximately six-month investigation revolving primarily around the illegal sale of the prescription pain killers Oxycodone and Hydrocodone.

Law enforcement officers began their efforts to arrest the suspects – who live in communities across Pike County – shortly after 9 a.m.

By 2 p.m. police had located and served warrants on 14 individuals:

• Jonathan Bentley, 23, Pikeville, first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance.

• Danny Casey, 27, Smith Fork Road, Phelps, second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance.

• Terry Lee Casey, 45, Cow Branch, Phelps, second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance.

• Randal Champlin, 45, Coon Branch Road, Pikeville, second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance.

• Catherine Craven, 44, Powells Creek Road, Elkhorn City, second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance.

• Melissa Faye Damron (also known as Michelle Ratliff or Michelle Potter), 36, Potters Grocery Road, Ashcamp, tampering with physical evidence.

• Melissa Coleman Heard, 43, Millard Highway, Millard, second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance.

• Kirby Holbrooks, 39, Marrowbone Creek Road, Jenkins, two counts second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance.

• Russell Eugene Holt, 47, Carl Burke Road, Virgie, first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance.

• Billy Ray Little, 75, Allegheny Road, Hellier, first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance.

• Brandi Mercer, 34, Brown Street, Millard, second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance.

• Carl Dick Pugh, 48, Wall Street, Regina, second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance and two counts trafficking in a controlled substance within 1,000 yards of a school.

• Keith Allen Rowe, 48, Highway 611 Poor Bottom Road, Lookout, first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance.

• Kimberly Tackett (also known as Shawn Wright), 40, KY 611, Dorton, three counts criminal possession of a forged prescription.

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