published Thursday, May 22nd, 2014

Nearly 40 people arrested after undercover drug operation

A four-month investigation by the Etowah Police Department resulted more than 130 charges landing almost 40 people in jail Wednesday on a variety of drug charges.

Etowah Police Chief Eric Armstrong said the arrests stemmed from an undercover operation started back in January.

The roundup began around 6 a.m. Wednesday involving about 40 officers from multiple state and local agencies, ending 12 hours later with one of the last suspects turning himself in at the county jail, Armstrong said.

“A lot of the charges are conspiracy to sell and deliver (drugs),” the chief said.

The drugs involved include mostly crack cocaine, marijuana, methamphetamine, and a variety of prescription pills, he said.

“I was very proud of the hard work that they put in over the last four months,” Armstrong said. “Nobody got hurt. If we didn't have all those agencies helping us, it would've been a nightmare, but it was a great job of teamwork yesterday.”

A number of vehicles also were seized during the operation, he said.

Armstrong said he has no memory of the Etowah Police Department ever conducting a roundup.

Contact staff writer Ben Benton at bbenton@timesfreepress.comor 423-757-6569.

about Ben Benton...

Ben Benton is a news reporter at the Chattanooga Times Free Press. He covers Southeast Tennessee and previously covered North Georgia education. Ben has worked at the Times Free Press since November 2005, first covering Bledsoe and Sequatchie counties and later adding Marion, Grundy and other counties in the northern and western edges of the region to his coverage. He was born and raised in Cleveland, Tenn., a graduate of Bradley Central High School. Benton ...

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