Press-Republican

August 30, 2013

Drug sweep uncovers more than expected

By FELICIA KRIEG
Press-Republican

---- — SARANAC LAKE — Saranac Lake Police say that during Wednesday’s countywide drug sweep, they happened upon methamphetamine precursors, which has led to several charges against suspects not on the original list.

The sweep nabbed 34 people in Malone and Saranac Lake, one of the biggest busts in recent history.

And, because of the unforeseen evidence found during the sweep, two others have been arrested. Shannon J. Emmons, 25, and Joseph Williams, 27, both of Saranac Lake, were each charged with criminal possession of precursors of methamphetamine, a felony; third-degree unlawful manufacture of methamphetamine, a felony, and seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, a misdemeanor.

SETTING OUT EARLY

On the Saranac Lake front, the drug sweep started with a 7 a.m. briefing at the station, said Saranac Lake Police Chief Bruce Nason.

Then officers split up, with some going to look for two suspects in an apartment at 155 Broadway St.

While they didn’t find the pair they were looking for, police did discover Emmons and Williams, along with Coleman fuel, cold packs and disassembled batteries — all meth precursors, Nason said.

“All of the ingredients that would be used to make meth were there except for the pseudoephedrine.”

Police obtained a search warrant for the apartment and uncovered a small amount of meth, the chief said.

HIDING

Police also found, hiding in a closet in that apartment, Bernard J. McCormick, 29, of North Bangor, who was arrested there on a warrant for failure to appear for a conference in Franklin County Court, Nason said.

McCormick was sent to Franklin County Jail to await arraignment in Franklin County Court.

Emmons and Williams were taken to the Franklin County Jail in lieu of $10,000 cash or $20,000 bond for each of them.

‘THE MOST HEROIN’

When officers searched another residence in the same apartment building, they uncovered six ounces of heroin, two ounces of crack cocaine, as well as LSD and ecstasy, Nason said.

“That’s the most heroin we’ve located at one time since I’ve been here at the Saranac Lake Police Department,” almost 19 years.

The resident of that apartment wasn’t home, but David M. Dean, 30, Chanhassen, Minn. was, Nason said.

Dean was charged with second-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance (heroin) and third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance (cocaine), both felonies, and was sent to Franklin County Jail without bail.

Nason said Dean had been arrested earlier, on Aug. 16, for possession of crack cocaine.

The drugs that Saranac Lake Police found Wednesday have a street value of more than $12,000, Nason said.

FOUR STILL AT LARGE

By noon Wednesday, the 18 suspects that Saranac Lake officers were able to find were in custody, Nason said.

One of the suspects from 155 Broadway that police are still trying to locate is Wesley R. Strack, 30. Also still at large are Alissa R. Tucker, 19; Nicholas B. Kolbasook, 19, and Adam S. Bateman, 23, who, police were told, may have recently moved to Massachusetts.

‘TIPS PAID OFF’

The Saranac Lake Police Department have been working these narcotics cases since April, Nason said.

Close to half of the cases were initially investigated because private citizens reported possible drug activity, he said.

“We appreciate and continue to encourage the public to call us.”

Nason said Saranac Lake Police couldn’t have executed a sweep of this size without the assistance of other law-enforcement agencies.

“The officers did an outstanding job.”

The investigations are continuing, and the chief said he hopes these drug arrests will lead to more.

“We’re going to continue to do this,” Nason said. “We certainly aren’t going to stop it, but we hope to slow it down.”

Email Felicia Krieg: fkrieg@pressrepublican.comTwitter: @FeliciaKrieg

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HOW TO HELP

Anyone with information about the fugitives wanted by Saranac Lake Village Police or any other possible drug activity in that area is asked to call 891-4422 or email policetips@saranaclakeny.gov.