By Patrick Yost
A citizen’s tip and nimble collaboration between the Morgan County Sheriff’s Office and Madison Police Department led to the arrest of six people Monday, including a man investigators called a “major player in drugs in Madison and Morgan County for a long while.”
More than six ounces of suspected methamphetamine and several ounces of both powder and crack cocaine were seized from both Jermaine Shaffer’s person and his Meadow Ridge Drive residence, Lt. Brandon Sellers, Morgan County Sheriff’s Office, said.
Sellers said initially a tip led officers from both the Madison Police Department and Morgan County Sheriff’s Office to an Orchard Grove apartment complex address on possible drug use. While at the apartment officers gained consent to search. That search led to the arrest of Jarid Ray Gordon, 28, Madison; Matthew Earl Lyonais, Jr., 28, Madison and Crystal Lee Treff, 27, Madison all charged with possession of methamphetamine. A fourth woman at the apartment, Kerry Ann Smith, 54, Madison was charged with possession of methamphetamine and possession of a schedule II drug.
Intelligence gained from the Orchard Grove arrests directed officers to wait for Shaffer, Chief Deputy Keith Howard, Morgan County Sheriff’s Office, said.
At 1:20 p.m., Sellers said, a vehicle driven by Shaffer was stopped entering the complex. Officers allegedly found an ounce of suspected methamphetamine and an ounce of both powder and crack cocaine on Shaffer’s person, Sellers said.
That arrest led officers to obtain a search warrant for Shaffer’s Meadow Ridge Drive residence. While executing the search warrant on the residence, Sellers said, officers allegedly found five ounces of suspected methamphetamine and one ounce of crack cocaine.
Also, while executing the search warrant, Mandrell Dyshawn Higgins, 25, Madison was arrested at the residence and charged with possession of marijuana with the intent to distribute after officers allegedly located an ounce of suspected marijuana.
Howard said the seizures were “a significant amount” and that the “collaborative effort between the county and city helps us multiple our manpower and makes us more efficient and effective.”
Madison Police Chief Bill Ashburn said the Madison Police Department has recently promoted officer Andre Johnson to detective and directed both Johnson and Sgt. Wes Thompson to “be proactive in drug enforcement.”
Ashburn said the city was actively sharing intelligence with county investigators to enhance drug enforcement efforts. “It’s going to work out well. It’s going to be good for both the city and county,” Ashburn said.