Ocean View police actively tackling local drug problem

In response to a drug raid in Ocean View involving the U.S. Department of Justice Drug Enforcement Administration, and resulting in multiple arrests and the confiscation of more than 1,200 bags of suspected heroin, a local police department is taking a multi-pronged approach to stop the problem.

“We are going to hit this from all angles,” Ocean View Police Chief Ken McLaughlin told the Coastal Point this week.

“We had a program at Lord Baltimore Elementary School for drug education. We’re going to have Narcan training, provide treatment options. We’re taking this stuff seriously. We’re tired of people dying in our community. That stuff is death. With every one of those bags, that’s what I think of — death. How you can sell that, I just don’t know. You have to almost not have a soul,” the chief said about the arrests on Nov. 21.

“Sometimes we get lulled into the fact we’re in ‘lower slower’ Sussex and we’re in the quiet resorts, but at the same time there are people dying from drugs. They are dying, so they are getting the stuff somewhere,” the chief said.

“Our concern is the folks that are selling this poison in our community, and we are going to do everything within our power to arrest these people and bring them to justice. I think everybody is just sick of it. Too many people are suffering. Too many people have lost their lives, or lost loved ones. Enough is enough,” McLaughlin said.

Training on use of the overdose-reversing drug Narcan will be offered at the Ocean View Police Department at 5 p.m. on Thursday, Dec. 12. Registration is required, by calling the police department at (302) 539-1111.

Next year, training will be offered every other month, McLaughlin said.

On Thursday, Nov 21, four Ocean View-area residents were arrested and charged with possession of cocaine and related offenses following a joint investigation that included the South Bethany, Rehoboth Beach and Delmar police departments.

Ocean View police initiated the investigation, assisted by the DEA and partnering agencies, following numerous complaints from the community regarding suspected drug activity, McLaughlin said. The investigation focused on two residences, on Meadow Lane in the Country Village neighborhood and on Yacht Basin Road just outside town limits.

Police executed search warrants at both locations. Seized at Yacht Basin Road were 67 grams of suspected cocaine, 1,270 individual bags of suspected heroin totaling approximately 19 grams, and $1,150 in suspected drug proceeds, McLaughlin said.

Arrested there was Antwain Johnson, 37, charged with possession of cocaine Tier V, possession of heroin Tier V, two counts of manufactures, delivers or possesses with intent to manufacture or deliver a controlled substance and maintaining a drug property, McLaughlin said.

Johnson was taken to Sussex County Correctional Institution. He posted $43,000 cash bail and was released.

Seized at the Meadow Lane residence were 35.2 grams of suspected cocaine, 2.5 grams of suspected crack cocaine and $1,205 in suspected drug proceeds. Arrested at that location were:

• James Showell, 48, who was charged with possession of cocaine Tier V, unlawful to knowingly operate or attempt to operate a clandestine laboratory, manufacture, delivers or possesses with intent to manufacture, deliver a controlled substance and maintaining a drug property. He posted $33,000 cash bail and was released.

• Kimberly Morgan, 48, who was charged with possession of cocaine Tier V, unlawful to knowingly operate or attempt to operate a clandestine laboratory, manufacture, delivers or possesses with intent to manufacture or deliver a controlled substance, maintaining a drug property and possession of crack cocaine.

She posted $34,000 cash bail and was released.

• Teresa Skeens, 62, was charged with possession of cocaine Tier V, unlawful to knowingly operate or attempt to operate a clandestine laboratory, manufacture, delivers or possesses with intent to manufacture or deliver a controlled substance and maintaining a drug property. She posted $33,000 cash bail and was released.

 

By Susan Canfora
Staff Reporter