Warrants: Claxton couple allegedly bought 20 grams of heroin per day for resale

Timothy Duane Fritz

A husband and wife in Claxton allegedly told police officers during a narcotics-related search on Wednesday that they bought 20 grams of heroin per day for resale, and they had been selling the illegal drug for about six months, according to Anderson County court records.

Agents who searched the home on King Street with a warrant last week found a suspected fentanyl-heroin compound that weighed about 10 grams, according to court affidavits and Simon Byrne, director of the Seventh Judicial District Crime Task Force.

The agents also found seven guns, suspected marijuana, drug paraphernalia that included baggies and scales, ammunition and magazines, and a large amount of cash, according to the affidavits, which were filed by CTF agent Perry Lewis.

The suspected heroin was in several bags, and it tested positive for a fentanyl compound, said the affidavits, which were filed in Anderson County General Sessions Court in Oak Ridge. The husband and wife, Timothy Duane Fritz, 48, and Atosha Leann Fritz, 41, said they got the heroin from an unknown man in Knoxville, according to Lewis.

The weapons found during the search on Wednesday included a Smith and Wesson 9mm handgun, a Lorcin .22-caliber handgun, an Anderson AR15 rifle, a Taurus Curve .380 handgun, a Smith and Wesson .22 revolver, a Colt Police Positive .38 handgun, and an Escort Magnum 12-gauge shotgun, the affidavits said.

[Read more…]

For members: Man charged with conspiracy to distribute cocaine, heroin, meth

Joshua Andrew Koch

A 42-year-old Anderson County man is facing federal charges of conspiring to distribute cocaine, heroin, and methamphetamine after a search of a home in Claxton in July allegedly found about 230 grams of a white, crystal-like substance thought to be methamphetamine and roughly 69.5 grams of a brown powder substance suspected to be heroin, according to state and federal court records.

The defendant, Joshua Andrew Koch, has also been charged with federal financial and firearms crimes, and he has seven co-defendants in the case, although the charges vary by defendant. A seven-count federal indictment filed in U.S. District Court in Knoxville in November alleged a two-year conspiracy.

 

Joshua Andrew Koch

 

A 42-year-old Anderson County man is facing federal charges of conspiring to distribute cocaine, heroin, and methamphetamine after a search of a home in Claxton in July allegedly found about 230 grams of a white, crystal-like substance thought to be methamphetamine and roughly 69.5 grams of a brown powder substance suspected to be heroin, according to state and federal court records.

The defendant has also been charged with federal financial and firearms crimes, and he has seven co-defendants in the case, although the charges vary by defendant.

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Anderson County man arrested after search allegedly finds meth, heroin

Steven Arthur Seiber
Steven Arthur Seiber

An Anderson County man has been charged with five drug-related crimes after a search of a home near Rocky Top in February found large amounts of suspected methamphetamine, heroin, and other drugs.

Steven Arthur Seiber, 30, has been charged with manufacturing, delivering, or selling a Schedule II controlled substance: 300 grams or more of methamphetamine. That’s a Class A felony in Tennessee.

Affidavits, which include short narratives describing alleged crimes, said the Seventh Judicial District Crime Task Force in Anderson County found about 18 bags (roughly 18 ounces) of suspected crystal methamphetamine in the master bedroom of a home on Andys Ridge Road during a search Wednesday night, February 13. (There are 28.35 grams per ounce.)

Agents also found about 21 bags (roughly 21 grams) of suspected heroin in the master bedroom, according to the affidavits, which were filed in Anderson County General Sessions Court in Oak Ridge by CTF Director Simon Byrne.

[Read more…]

Oak Ridge man charged with murder in drug death

Ronald Nicholas Bunch
Ronald Nicholas Bunch

An Oak Ridge man has been charged with second-degree murder in the drug-related death of another Oak Ridge man in February.

It could be the first time that anyone has been charged with murder, rather than homicide, for a drug-related fatality in Anderson County. There has been a previous case where a man was charged with and convicted of homicide in a drug overdose death.

The man who died on February 6 was Steven Douglas Scruggs, 34.

Indicted in his death was Ronald Nicholas Bunch, 28, of West Wadsworth Circle in Oak Ridge. Bunch’s indictment for second-degree murder on June 4 said he unlawfully and knowingly killed Scruggs through the unlawful distribution of a Schedule II controlled substance, and the drug caused Scruggs’ death. Second-degree murder is a Class A felony in Tennessee.

The charge of second-degree murder, part of a three-count indictment, doesn’t specifically say what drug killed Scruggs. But the second count of the indictment charged Bunch with possessing fentanyl, a Schedule II medication, for resale.

[Read more…]

CTF search finds meth, heroin, pills in Briceville

A search by law enforcement officers at a home in Briceville on Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2019, found large amounts of methamphetamine and heroin and hundreds of prescription pills, and charges are pending, a press release said. (Photo courtesy Anderson County Sheriff's Department)

A search by law enforcement officers at a home in Briceville on Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2019, found large amounts of methamphetamine and heroin, and hundreds of prescription pills, and charges are pending, a press release said. (Photo courtesy Anderson County Sheriff’s Department)

 

A search by law enforcement officers at a home in Briceville last week found large amounts of methamphetamine and heroin, and hundreds of prescription pills, a press release said. Charges are pending, the release said.

The Seventh Judicial Crime Task Force in Anderson County, which had search warrants, searched the home on Wednesday, February 13, according to a press release from the Anderson County Sheriff’s Department.

The search warrants led to the discovery of one pound and two ounces of methamphetamine, 21 grams of heroin, and hundreds of prescription pills, the press release said. The suspect and owner of the property where the search warrants were served was located and interviewed, the release said. The approximate street value of the narcotics was $53,000.

The suspect was not identified in the press release. [Read more…]

CTF finds about 10 grams of suspected heroin in second search of home

James William Donald

James William Donald

 

Law enforcement officers found about 10 grams of suspected heroin in their second search of a home on West Outer Drive in less than two years.

The defendant, James William Donald, 71, told Seventh Judicial District Crime Task Force Agent Kenneth Woods that he would “take money from other individuals for the purchase of heroin as well as provide heroin to friends that would visit his residence,” according to arrest warrants filed in Anderson County General Sessions Court in Oak Ridge in December.

The home on West Outer Drive is within about 75 feet of the Children’s Museum of Oak Ridge, according to the warrants.

The most recent search by the Crime Task Force occurred on Thursday, December 20. The CTF had a search warrant to seize all controlled substances, the warrants said. [Read more…]

Woman sentenced to eight years after drugs discarded during police chase

Clarissa Sharee Tindell

Clarissa Sharee Tindell

 

A Knoxville woman who fled from the Tennessee Highway Patrol in a car in Anderson County last year as methamphetamine and heroin were discarded from the moving vehicle pleaded guilty to four charges and was sentenced to eight years in prison on Tuesday.

About 60 grams of methamphetamine and less than a gram of heroin were thrown out of a car window and two patrol vehicles were hit during the police chase, which started in Clinton and ended in Rocky Top on Sunday, July 30, 2017, according to court proceedings and affidavits.

The plea agreement hearing for the driver of the 1992 Honda Accord, Clarissa Sharee Tindell, 25, was Tuesday in Anderson County Criminal Court in Clinton. Her plea was by information, meaning she entered a plea before she was formally charged in an indictment by the Anderson County Grand Jury. Early pleas can lead to agreements more favorable to defendants.

Tindell, who was represented by defense attorney Paul Sexton of Oak Ridge, had been charged earlier in Anderson County General Sessions Court in Clinton in a case that included additional counts such as aggravated assault, possession of a firearm during a felony, speeding (117 mph in a 45 mph zone), and failure to yield the right of way, among other charges. Those charges were waived to the Grand Jury on June 6. [Read more…]

Woman receives three-year sentence in drug overdose

Heather Marie Rau

Heather Marie Rau

 

An Oak Ridge woman received a three-year prison sentence in a plea agreement on Monday after a drug overdose that reportedly involved a fentanyl analogue last year left a man unconscious on a hallway floor with a very weak pulse and unable to breathe on his own.

Heather Mariue Rau, 30, pleaded guilty in Anderson County Criminal Court in Clinton on Monday to charges of aggravated assault, reckless endangerment with illegal narcotics (acrylfentanyl), promotion of methamphetamine manufacture, possession of methamphetamine, possession of drugs for sale, and possession of drug paraphernalia. Those charges were from two separate indictments against Rau last year.

A second, duplicate charge of possession of drug paraphernalia was dismissed as part of the plea agreement.

Rau must pay court costs and fines that appear to total close to $9,000, according to criminal judgements filed by the Anderson County Circuit Court Clerk. She will receive credit for time served after being jailed at the Anderson County Detention Facility in Clinton since February 16, 2017. As a standard offender, her release eligibility has been set at 30 percent. [Read more…]

Updated: Homicide charge in drug-related fatality could be a first in Anderson County

Troy Andrew Venable

Troy Andrew Venable

 

This story was last updated at 5:30 p.m.

The reckless homicide charge filed against an Oak Ridge man in a grand jury indictment after a drug-related fatality could be a first in Anderson County, a law enforcement official said.

Troy Andrew Venable, 29, was indicted in April on a reckless homicide charge in the death of Lauren Alexandra Fritts, 26.

Seventh Judicial District Attorney General Dave Clark said it is, as far as he knows, the first time in Anderson County that someone has been indicted on a homicide charge in a drug-related fatality. [Read more…]

Meth, heroin thrown out car window, patrol cars hit, THP says

Clarissa Sharee Tindell

Clarissa Sharee Tindell

 

Sixty-three grams of methamphetamine were thrown out of a car window and two patrol vehicles were hit during a police chase that started in Clinton and ended in Rocky Top on Sunday, July 30, authorities said. The vehicle occupants also threw out about one-half gram of heroin, and the car they were in almost hit two Anderson County patrol vehicles head-on, the Tennessee Highway Patrol said.

That afternoon, THP Trooper Isaiah Lloyd tried to stop a black Honda sedan for failure to yield the right of way and a turn signal violation at the intersection of State Route 61 (North Charles G. Seivers Boulevard) and Longmire Road in Clinton, near the Clinch River and Anderson County Detention Facility, according to affidavits filed in Anderson County General Sessions Court in Clinton.

The 1992 Honda Accord had cut off a red pickup truck at the intersection, Lloyd said.

But the car refused to stop after he activated his emergency equipment, Lloyd said.

While the Honda was traveling down Longmire Road, the car occupants threw two items out the window, according to Lloyd:

  1. a baby formula can that contained a jar with about 63.93 grams of methamphetamine, and
  2. a black metal box that contained a set of scales, 0.53 grams of heroin, and multiple plastic bags.

[Read more…]

Woman indicted on assault, endangerment charges in drug overdose

Heather Marie Rau

Heather Marie Rau

An Oak Ridge woman has been indicted on charges of aggravated assault and reckless endangerment in a drug overdose reported in February.

The drug that allegedly caused the overdose of Wesley “Bud” Arnold on West Outer Drive on February 16 had been said to be heroin, according to affidavits filed earlier this year in Anderson County General Sessions Court in Oak Ridge.

Arnold was unconscious on a hallway floor, had a very weak pulse, and could not breathe on his own when an emergency medical crew responded to the overdose at about 3 p.m. February 16. Emergency personnel were able to revive Arnold by giving him a dose of Narcan, which is used to help people who overdose on opioid-based narcotics.

But indictments filed against Heather Marie Rau, 29, on August 1, said the illegal narcotic was not heroin but actually acrylfentanyl, a fentanyl analogue that is more powerful and dangerous than heroin.

Rau had advised Arnold not to “shoot it,” or inject it, because she knew that what she had given him could possibly kill him, according to the affidavits filed in February. Rau and another man, Willie Williams, had ingested the same drug on February 12, and Rau overdosed while Williams died, said the affidavits, filed by Oak Ridge Police Department Detective John Criswell. [Read more…]