Two suspected meth suppliers arrested by cops

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By Patrick Yost editor

Months of surveillance and investigation by both the Morgan County Sheriff’s Office and Madison Police Department ended in methamphetamine arrests last week.

On Friday, May 23, Sgt. Chad Lanier, Morgan County Sheriff’s Office Investigations Division and Morgan County Deputy Joseph Pritchett attempted to make a vehicle stop on William H. Paden, 44, Madison on Greensboro Highway. Paden, according to Capt. Chris Bish, Morgan County Sheriff’s Office, has been under investigation by the department for several months. During the traffic stop attempt Paden allegedly rammed Lanier’s vehicle in an attempt to circumvent a rolling roadblock. Paden was eventually stopped on VFW Lane, near his residence on the same road, after more deputies and Madison Police Department officers swarmed to the scene.

After the stop, reports state, found full plastic bags of suspected methamphetamine and methamphetamine powder on the front seat of Paden’s vehicle. Bish said investigators believe Paden attempted to eat the substance prior to stopping for officers. “He consumed quite a bit of it,” Bish said.

After Paden was booked in the Morgan County Detention Center, a jailer observed him convulsing. He was then transported to Morgan Memorial Hospital and then to Athens Regional where he was treated for drug overdose. He was then returned to the Morgan County Detention Center.

Officers executed a search warrant on the VFW Lane property and allegedly secured methamphetamine prepared for distribution and other drug paraphernalia. Paden’s wife, Kimberly D. Paden, 41, was also arrested and charged with party to a crime after the search warrant was executed.

William Paden is charged with aggravated assault, possession of methamphetamine with the intent to distribute, fleeing or attempting to elude, obstruction, reckless driving and failure to maintain lane.

“He’s been a significant source of methamphetamine in Morgan County for some time,” Bish said.

On Tuesday, May 20, Madison Police Department investigators and members of the Ocmulgee Drug Task Force executed a search warrant on the Budget Inn Motel room of Ronnie Joe Payne, 37, Madison and secured individually wrapped plastic bags of suspected methamphetamine, scales and other drug paraphernalia. According to Investigator Scott Pitocchelli, Madison Police Department, Payne had been under investigation since September. Pitocchelli said a search warrant was granted after investigators made several controlled buys of suspected methamphetamine from Payne during the length of the investigation.

Payne was arrested at approximately 10:30 p.m. without incident by officers. Pitocchelli said approximately two grams of methamphetamine was seized from Payne’s room.’

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