DTF nets first arrest under new law

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, October 24, 2012

The Babbie couple arrested Monday by Drug Task Force agents are the first two people in the county to be charged under a new possession with the intent to distribute statute.

Roy Draper

Monday afternoon, Drug Task Force agents concluded a month-long investigation by shutting down an alleged drug dealer in Babbie. DTF Commander Mark Odom said agent Greg Jackson had received information from various sources that Roy Draper, 56, and his wife, Gyndol Draper, 59, were selling narcotics out of their Nelson Road home.

“The information had come from both concerned citizens and confidential informants,” Odom said. “The more (Jackson) looked into the Drapers, the more the evidence seemed to build up. Thanks to his hard work, plus a little bit of luck, we were able to obtain a search warrant for the home.”

Meanwhile, the couple was taken into custody on West Cummings Avenue in Opp following a traffic stop, Odom said.

Gyndol Draper

After the county’s Incident Response Team cleared the inside of the home, agents allegedly found the evidence they needed to charge the couple – 19 grams of ICE, also known as methamphetamine, and an estimated 12 ounces of marijuana, all of which was packaged for sale. Agents also found digital scales, more than $1,500 in U.S. currency and a journal that appears to contain information about drug sales, Odom said.

Also while on the scene, officers ran the serial number to a four-wheeler and found it listed as stolen by the National Crime Information Center. Jackson is investigating the stolen property with the assistance of Covington County Sheriff Office and Opp Police Department investigators, Odom said.

“We have worked meth labs in Covington County on a regular basis for over 12 years,” he said. “What we are starting to see more of now, though, is an increase in the number of meth cases involving the drug being trafficked into our county.

“This has been a problem for our neighboring counties to the east for several years, but not until recently here,” he said. “We believe these drugs were not manufactured here, but were brought in from somewhere else. I guess the drug dealers from outside our county don’t know how seriously we, the DA’s Office and the citizens of Covington County take the war on drugs. If they continue to bring this poison into our community, they will soon find out though.”

Each Draper was charged with possession of a controlled substance with intent to distribute, a statute passed during the last legislative session; possession of marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia and receiving stolen property. They are currently being held in the county jail under a $270,000 bond each.