Two charged in Cherokee County, N.C., drug investigation, fight with officers

Two charged in Cherokee County, N.C., drug investigation, fight with officers

August 18th, 2017 by Ben Benton in Breaking News

Cynthia Lynn Smith

Cynthia Lynn Smith

Photo by Contributed Photo /Times Free Press.

Brian Matthew Bailey

Brian Matthew Bailey

Photo by Contributed Photo /Times Free Press.

A Northeast Georgia couple was arrested this week in Cherokee County, N.C., on drug charges and charges linked to a fight with deputies during their arrest that left the officers with what were described as serious injuries.

Brian Matthew Bailey, 39, of Mineral Bluff, Ga., and 32-year-old Cynthia Lynn Smith, of Blue Ridge, Ga., are charged. Bailey was charged with three counts of assault on a law enforcement officer inflicted serious injury, possession of methamphetamine, possession of heroin, possession of drug paraphernalia, maintaining a place-vehicle for the use and consumption of a controlled substance and resisting an officer. Smith was charged with fleeing arrest with a motor vehicle, possession of methamphetamine, possession of heroin, maintaining a place for use of controlled substances, and possession of drug paraphernalia, Cherokee County Sheriff Derrick Palmer in a statement on the arrests.

The charges stem from an Aug. 14 investigation into illegal possession and sale of drugs in Culberson, an unincorporated community a few miles southwest of Murphy on the North Carolina-Georgia line, Palmer said.

During the investigation, a detective saw a vehicle driven in a suspicious manner that eventually make an "unsafe movement and also violated other traffic laws," the sheriff said.

The detective attempted to stop the vehicle but it fled at a high rate of speed, triggering a chase.

Palmer said the chase ended when other units of the Sheriff's Department's narcotics division boxed the vehicle in and Bailey got out and started "fighting with detectives from which they sustained serious injuries."

"Bailey eventually became compliant and quit fighting and was put in a patrol vehicle and then transported the the Cherokee County Detention Center," Palmer said.

When officers searched Bailey they found a "sizable" amount of methamphetamine on him, Palmer said.

Bailey is being held on a $86,000 secure bond while Smith is being held on a F26,000 secure bond. Both are expected to appear in Cherokee County District Court Aug. 29.

"Again good work by our team in locating and getting more illegal drugs out of our community," Palmer said. "You can see the lengths individuals are going to evade capture. I think that it speaks well of our officers that although they received serious injuries while arresting Bailey they were able to accomplish the arrest using the least amount of force necessary."

Contact staff writer Ben Benton at bbenton@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6569. Follow him on Twitter @BenBenton.


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