DTF night-time raids net four arrests

Published 12:00 am Saturday, February 19, 2005

Thursday night and into Friday morning, the Tri-County’s drug taskforce made their rounds. The group went from World Street in Greenville all the way up to King Street in Collerene, which is in Northwest Lowndes County.

At the first stop, which was located next to a crack house that the squad had previously closed down, the taskforce was able to secure the home of LeReggie Stoutmire.

After a lengthy search of the house, Stoutmire was led out of the home and placed into a patrol car where he was charged with possession of marijuana in the first degree as well as possessing drug paraphernalia.

But, after Stoutmire arrived at the Butler County Jail, the work of the taskforce paid off.

Stoutmire was also charged with promoting prison contraband.

&uot;We just appreciate the partnership we have with the drug taskforce,&uot; said Greenville police chief Lonzo Ingram. &uot;Their efforts have been very successful and we look forward to working with the taskforce this calendar year and looking for a great deal of success. We plan on the year 2005 being a banner year for drug enforcement in Greenville.&uot;

From there, the group reset and then traveled to the northwestern part of Lowndes County to the community of Collerene. Their destination was 1044 King Street.

At this location the drug taskforce was able to find what was a termed a good amount of illegal substances as well as a small gun. The night ended with three people being charged and taken into custody in Hayneville by a Lowndes County Deputy Sheriff.

&uot;Most of the stuff we got last night was personal use amounts,&uot; said Lt. Chris West, commander of the Drug Taskforce. &uot;Usually in Lowndes County we get more but maybe our timing was off. Thursday is usually the time we go thinking that there would have been more dope.&uot;

Alfreda Lawrence, the aim of the DTF’s warrant was arrested and charged with possession of a control substance, unlawful possession of marijuana in the second degree and unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia. Jamaul Rudolph was also arrested and charged with possession of a control substance and possession of a pistol with no license. Leon Middleton was arrested and charged with unlawful possession of a control substance and unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia.

&uot;The taskforce is a multi-agency entity,&uot; said Willie Varner, Director of the Drug Taskforce and Sheriff of Lowndes County. &uot;They work with Lowndes, Butler and Crenshaw counties, and to me they have been doing an outstanding. Drugs are a problem in all of our communities, anytime we have an agency like the drug taskforce and help keep them away from our children is a big asset to us and I am thankful that they are here and they are doing an outstanding job.

The Drug Taskforce was founded in 1991 thanks to grants from the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs and has been live and kicking ever since.

&uot;Kenny Parker from Greenville was assigned to the taskforce from Greenville, but went back to Greenville as a Lieutenant,&uot; said West. &uot;Everyone in the neighborhood saw Parker back on the streets and everyone thought they was no more Drug Taskforce. We had gotten down to two agents and were waiting for Greenville to send someone over but they were short-staffed. And then Kevin Mitchell got appointed as the Chief of Police in Hayneville and that put us short again. But now, we are back in business.&uot;

The Drug Taskforce operates with 75 percent of their funding coming from ADECA and the other 25 percent is funded by the participating agencies within the taskforce. Greenville, Luverne, Hayneville to name a few.

The Drug Taskforce also receives a lot of its funding from the ATF, Alabama Bureau of Investigation, the U.S. Attorney’s offices and the District Attorney’s office.