After nearly a year of investigation in a joint effort between the LaGrange Police Department and The Georgia Bureau of Investigation’s west metro task force, 20 people were indicted in the Troup County Grand Jury last week on conspiracy to commit trafficking in methamphetamine charges, one of which being a primary supplier in the area.
William Eugene Thomas Jr., of LaGrange was arrested in September 2013, when a search warrant was issued and officials found a little over 18 ounces of methamphetamine.
According to Sgt. Mark Cavender, officials began the investigation last year around May or June.
Thomas has allegedly been responsible for purchasing and distributing large amounts of methamphetamine, Cavender said.
Thomas would allegedly purchase the supply from outside sources like Atlanta and with the help of a ring of co-conspirators, would distribute in the county. The distribution also reached to Panama City, Florida.
After Thomas’ arrest, his daughter Laci Shea Thomas, of LaGrange allegedly continued the enterprise.
Since the investigation, arrests have been made in LaGrange, Franklin, Alabama and Panama City.
Those arrested were allegedly involved in the purchasing, distribution, transportation, money-handling or other informant sources such as arranging deals.
Cavender said all those involved stemmed off Thomas’ enterprise.
Those indicted are Adam Lee Arrington, Kimberly Ann Brown, Crystal Deanna Bunn, Shelly Harrington, Michael Christopher Hubbard, James Eric Landers, Leslie Ann Moman, Ronald Corey Moss, Tara Strickland, Wayne Clyde Terry, Laci Shea Thomas, Amber Brooke Tucker and Kimberly Lynn Phelps, all of LaGrange; Kyle Garver and Brad Gosa of Columbus; Christopher Bryan Hyatt of Roanoke, Ala.; Barry William Petty Jr. and Lacy Betty Petty of Franklin; and Destiny Dawn Locklear of Panama City, Fla.
Between all parties, 10 counts were brought against them including conspiracy to commit trafficking in methamphetamine, trafficking in methamphetamine, possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute, possession of a schedule III controlled substance with intent to distribute, criminal attempt to influence a witness, computer invasion of privacy, and possession of a schedule IV controlled substance.
These crimes all took place between June 2012 and December 2013 according to the indictment.