Wilkes Sheriff Chris Shew on Thursday announced felony drug charges filed against 45 people as a result of investigations conducted over the past three months.

Shew said many of the investigations were initiated after citizens reported seeing suspicious activities in their communities.

The latest efforts resulted in the seizure of 988 grams of meth with a street value of about $35,000, 12 grams of heroin worth about $1,800, 157 prescription pills (mostly Oxycodone pain pills) worth about $5,000 and 28 grams of cocaine worth about $1,200. About 29 grams of marijuana were seized.

Capt. Craig Dancy, who heads the sheriff’s office’s narcotics unit, said meth is still the dominant illegal drug in Wilkes.

“People tell me they are afraid to use heroin because of fentanyl” it often contains, he said. “I’ve had people come in and help us (by providing information on drug activities) because a buddy overdosed on heroin.”

Dancy said arrests of other people as a result of recent drug investigations were delayed as part of efforts to keep the Wilkes County Jail inmate population down during the COVID-19 pandemic. He said these arrests with additional charges will be made soon.

Dancy also said that targets of recent drug investigations locally are carrying firearms or have them nearby more than normal.

The recent cases include one in which Kevin Scott Townsend, 43, of Robin Lane, North Wilkesboro, is charged with level three trafficking in meth as a result of the amount involved. This is the highest level. Townsend is also charged with possession with intent to sell and deliver (PWISD) meth and maintaining a dwelling for keeping a controlled substance.

Dancy said Terrell L. Dixon, 34, of Westfield is charged with two counts of trafficking in meth, PWISD meth and maintaining a vehicle for a controlled substance.

Reports of suspected drug activities in the Cabin Creek section of Hays led to arrests of five people. Dancy said William Thomas Johnson, 62, of Cabin Creek Road was identified as the supplier of the other four. He is charged with trafficking in meth, maintaining a dwelling for controlled substances and PWISD meth.

One of the other four, John Scott Davis, 44, of Zacks Fork Road in the Kings Creek community of Caldwell County, is charged with PWISD meth. Bethany Brooke Cornett, 40, of Russell Gap Road, Moravian Falls, is charged with possession of meth. Jessica Renee Wolfe, 35, of Cabin Creek Road, is charged with PWISD pain pills and Kristen Annette Jarvis, 31, of Boomer Road, Boomer, is charged with possession of pain pills.

Dancy said four people are charged as a result of an investigation that began after reports were received of possible drug activities in a concentrated area of Moravian Falls. He said Shannon Marie Kilpatrick, 42, of Moravian Falls Road, Moravian Falls, was identified as the supplier and was initially charged with PWISD pain pills.

He said the other three are Garry Auston Walker Jr., 35, of Farm Brook Drive, Millers Creek, charged with PWISD meth and PWISD marijuana; Dustin Clinton Call, 28, Old Homestead Road, Wilkesboro, PWISD meth; and Cody Andrew Bolick, 24, PWISD meth and maintaining a vehicle for controlled substances.

Dancy said Kilpatrick was also charged with PWISD meth, maintaining a dwelling for keeping a controlled substance and possession of a firearm with an altered serial number after she was arrested Friday morning.

Three people from Lenoir charged with PWISD meth in the same Wilkes Sheriff’s Office investigation are Aaron Wolfgang Upton, 24; Dalton Lee Storie, 23; and Shannon Lynn Dubose, 33. Dubose is also charged with giving false information to law enforcement.

Traci Lynn Call, 29, of Country Square Drive, Wilkesboro, and Trisha Marie Nelson, 44, of Statesville, are charged with conspiring with each other to sell meth. Call, Nelson and Jessica Marie Brody, 32, of East Bend are all charged with PWISD meth and with selling meth as a result of the same investigation.

Matthew Neil Rose, 36, of Culpepper Lane, Ronda, and Brandi Mae McGee, 24, of Dennyville Road, Ronda, are charged with PWISD meth and pills in the same investigation. Rose is charged with maintaining a vehicle for keeping a controlled substance and an additional count of PWISD pills.

Rex Randall Whittington, 55, of Winkler Mill Road, Wilkesboro, and Charles Lewis Spears, 57, of Blackburn Hollow Road, Purlear are charged with PWISD meth in the same investigation. Spears is also charged with maintaining a vehicle for a controlled substance.

Other meth cases

Charged with PWISD meth in cases not directly related to each other are Melinda Mahan Rhodes, 44, of Ruff Road, North Wilkesboro; Jacob Richard Owens, 25, of Kent Drive, Millers Creek; Jeremy Smith Eldreth, 36, of Lansing; Jimmy Dean Pilkington, 42, of Harts Drive, Purlear; and Lance Harrold McManus of Man Harrold Road, Hays. McManus is also charged with maintaining a vehicle for controlled substances.

Charged with PWISD meth and selling meth in separate cases are Damon Bill Agee, 26, of Yadkinville; Jacob Lee Anderson, 20, of Hackett Street, North Wilkesboro; and Dillon Lee Davis, 20, of Traphill Road, Traphill.

Dillon is also charged with maintaining a vehicle for controlled subtances. Matthew Allen Wilson, 26, of Water Tower Lane, North Wilkesboro, is charged with PWISD meth, possession of a firearm by a felon and maintaining a vehicle for a controlled substance. 

Heroin cases

 Gregory Alan Wellington, 47, of West Jefferson and China K. Martin, 38, of Camp Joe Harris Road, North Wilkesboro, were both charged with PWISD heroin in the same investigation. Wellington was also charged with maintaining a vehicle for a controlled substance.

Christopher Antonio-Nadre Scott, 28, of N.C. 18, North Wilkesboro, and Anthony Charles Palazzolo, 28, of Industrial Drive, Wilkesboro, are charged with conspiring with each other to sell heroin and with PWISD heroin. Scott is also charged with selling heroin.

Joshua Anthony Allen, 33, of North Ridge Road, Roaring River was charged with PWISD heroin and with selling heroin.

Tressa Elizabeth Wandling, 36, of Homestead Drive, Hays, is charged with PWISD heroin and with selling heroin.

David Allen Chambers, 55, of 10th Street, North Wilkesboro, is charged with PWISD heroin and with selling heroin, as well as with PWISD pain pills and selling pain pills. He also is charged with maintaining a dwelling for controlled substances. 

Other cases

Charged with PWISD cocaine and selling cocaine in separate cases are Curtis Lee Taylor, 36, of E Street, North Wilkesboro (three counts); Robert Lewis Hairston, 56, of Bell Court Drive, North Wilkesboro; and Harvey Lee Fowler Jr., 49, of Curtis Bridge Road, Wilkesboro. Hairston is also charged with maintaining a vehicle for a controlled substance.

Charged with PWISD pain pills are Richard Wayne Cox Jr., 36, of Vannoy Road, Millers Creek; Matthew Daniel Lovette, 27, of Winding Trails Place, Moravian Falls; Crystal Gail Adams, 44, of Oak Ridge Church Road, Hays; William Jessie Penley, 34, of Reidsville; and Cynthia Regina Bennett, 45, of Russell Drive, Ronda.

Russell and Bennett are also charged with PWISD marijuana; Lovette is also charged with maintaining a vehicle for a controlled substance; Adams is also charged with PWISD meth and maintaining a vehicle for a controlled substance; and Penley is also charged with PWISD crack cocaine and marijuana and attempting to destroy evidence.

Dancy said the N.C. Highway Patrol and the Alexander and Yadkin sheriff's offices assisted. He said Det. Tim Sims of the Alexander Sheriff's Office, with that agency's drug dog, provided valuable assistance.

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