PIKEVILLE, Ky. (WYMT) - Pikeville Police Department arrested five people in a large drug bust following a routine stop plus several complaints of drug activity.
Top L-R: Timothy Cantrell, Charles R. Doneghy // Bottom L-R: Jessica L. Bartley, Merxiadeze A. Larsen, Zeola L. Vance
"The first individual that we had made contact with, he admitted to everything that he had done," said Pikeville Police Chief Chris Edmonds.
Police saw a man staggering near Holly Court and brought him into the police station for further questioning.
"He had thrown his meth down when he saw the officer get out of his car and everything like that. So that led us to a drug investigation," recalled Edmonds.
The man told officers he received free meth from a home on Cedar Hills in Pikeville.
"That one was a new one on me there. I have never heard of somebody just giving it to them," Edmonds pointed out.
Next, police received consent to search the home in question.
When police officers arrived at the house, Cantrell's mother, who owns the house, allowed police to search the home.
"Kinda wasn't shocking what we found but the amount was," said Edmonds.
A search of the home and the pool house resulted in officers finding $20,000 worth of methamphetamine, as well as pills. Police believed the pills to be Suboxone and Ecstasy, court documents said.
During the search, a police officer could smell a strong odor of marijuana coming from the pool house.
"That's probably a 2-gram rock right there. That's a normal purchase," said Edmonds, holding a small baggie.
We asked Chief Edmonds to break that down for us.
"Distributors of the meth are coming in with six to seven to eight ounces. This is 6.6 ounces of just pure crystal methamphetamine," explained Edmonds.
This equals out to nearly 200 customers paying 100 dollars each.
"You may go to Louisville and buy a little larger chunk than this right here for $4,500. You're going to come back into your area and make $40,000 off of it," Edmonds explained.
Police said there were three women and one man inside sitting in a circle.
Officers arrested Timothy Cantrell, 41, Charles R. Doneghy, 30, Jessica L. Bartley, 40, Merxiadeze A. Larsen, 28, and Zeola L. Vance, 35, all of Pikeville, Tuesday.
When the officer looked inside, he could see marijuana laying on the arm of the chair that Doneghy said was his and for personal use.
"Residents in our area can lead police in the right direction a lot of times because they see a lot more than we do. They're there all the time," said Edmonds. "One little thing can lead to a big discovery," he continued.
Cantrell, Doneghy, Bartley, Larsen, and Vance are facing charges of first-degree and first-offense trafficking in more than two grams of meth.
Doneghy was also charged with failure to appear and possession of marijuana.
All were taken to the Pike County Detention Center.