Drug bust

This photo, courtesy of the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office, shows some of the items seized from a mobile home off Steel Bridge Road in Putnam County drug bust on Jan. 8.

EATONTON, Ga. — A three-month undercover drug investigation involving methamphetamine has led to the arrests of seven people thus far in Putnam County, local authorities say.

An estimated 14 grams, or about a half ounce ,of methamphetamine was seized as a result of the drug raid.

As of Thursday night, authorities still were seeking two other suspects in connection with the drug investigation that began last fall and ended Jan. 8 when seven people were arrested at a rented doublewide mobile home located at 524 S. Steel Bridge Road near Lake Sinclair.

Putnam County Sheriff’s Office Detective Lt. Harry Luke, who heads the narcotics division, said two of the suspects taken into custody, Jason Lee Carithers, 42, of South Steel Bridge Road, Eatonton, and Mindy Monique James, 31, of Rope Trail, Covington, both had outstanding warrants out of DeKalb County for trafficking in methamphetamine. 

James was charged with one count of Violation of the Georgia Controlled Substances Act (VGCSA) for possession of methamphetamine, and possession of a drug related object, according to jail records.

Luke told The Union-Recorder Thursday night that Carithers is a member of the Ghost Face Gang and had just been released from prison last October.

Carithers was charged with VGCSA for possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute in the Putnam County case. 

“He’s been in and out of prison most of his life,” Luke said.

Luke said outstanding warrants had been issued for a woman and a man in connection with the drug investigation. Both of the suspects are wanted on charges related to methamphetamine.

The man sought, meanwhile, is out of prison on an armed robbery conviction charge, Luke said. The same man also is wanted on a probation violation warrant by the Rockdale County Sheriff’s Office in Conyers.

“Mindy James is actually the sister of Justin James, one of the suspects we’re still trying to locate,” Luke said.

The drug investigation began after the sheriff’s office received information concerning the amount of traffic in and out of the house — “not just driving, but walkups of people, too,” Luke said.

The veteran lawman said people were going to the residence to purchase methamphetamine.

“We ended up making an undercover buy to get probable cause for a search warrant,” Luke said, noting the warrant was obtained from Putnam County Associate Magistrate Jesse Copelan.

Luke said the drug investigation was part of a joint effort between the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office, the Morgan County Sheriff’s Office and the Jasper County Sheriff’s Office.

“We all work together in dope cases,” Luke said.

The arrests of the seven suspects now in custody were done with the help of four deputies from the Morgan County Sheriff’s Office, along with Luke, Deputy Sgt. Bob Rodgers and Deputy Taylor Neal from Putnam County Sheriff’s Office.

Luke said three of the suspects were arrested inside a shed in the yard of the residence, while the other four were arrested inside the residence.

“Every one of these people that we arrested have an addiction problem,” Luke said. “They sell enough meth to simply supply their habits.”

He pointed out that Sheriff Howard Sills described it as “a hive of hoodlums.”

The other five suspects arrested were identified as:

  • Shawn Daniel Malm, 37, of Capps Lane, Eatonton, charged with VGCSA for possession of methamphetamine. Malm also was arrested on a bench warrant for failure to appear in court.
  • Ryan Patrick Ramey, 25, of Cold Branch Road, Eatonton, VGCSA for possession of methamphetamine, and possession of a drug related object.
  • Michael Toye Garmon, 65, of South Steel Bridge Road, Eatonton, possession of a drug related object.
  • Sebrina Dawn Khanna, 33, of South Steel Bridge Road, Eatonton, VGCSA for possession of methamphetamine, and possession of a drug related object.
  • Angel Deserae Harper, 28, of South Steel Bridge Road, Eatonton, VGCSA for possession of methamphetamine, affixing a license plate with intent to copy, driving without a license, and possession of a drug related object. 

The suspects were all taken to the Putnam County Jail in Eatonton after their arrest.

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