The Guthrie County Sheriff’s Office recently executed 12 search warrants which resulted in 20 arrests for drug offenses in what Sheriff Marty Arganbright says is a growing problem for the county and the surrounding area.
Seventeen of the 20 arrests were for felony charges, and 19 of the cases involved methamphetamine or ecstasy. While Arganbright says the amount of drug arrests in this span of time is higher than usual, the drug situation in the county continues to get worse as his jail is frequently full with more inmates housed in other counties, “That’s why I’m working hard to get a jail referendum for November to get this new jail facility built because we’re going to need it.”
Several law enforcement agencies assisted the Sheriff’s Office in this investigation, and Arganbright adds his office remains committed to pursuing drug violations in the county and surrounding areas.
Between July 10th, 2019 and August 1st, 2019, the Guthrie County Sheriff’s Office executed a total of twelve search warrants as part of drug investigations in Guthrie County. Ten of the search warrants were executed in Guthrie County, with one in Carroll County and one in Audubon County.
A total of twenty drug violators have been arrested or having pending arrests. Of the twenty arrested or with pending arrests, seventeen were arrested on a felony charge or charges.
A total of one hundred criminal charges have been filed against the twenty individuals with thirty-two of those charges being filed as felonies. Nineteen of the twenty cases involved methamphetamine or ecstasy. Only one involved marijuana alone, and in that case, it is alleged the marijuana was for sale.
The following thirteen individuals are charged with crimes where they are alleged to have possessed controlled substances with intent to deliver or are alleged to have delivered controlled substances: David Elliott – Bayard, Laura Smith – Bayard, Gabriella Madison – Bayard, Charles Bradshaw Jr. – Bayard, Shawn Lyons – Bayard, Sherri Lyons – Bayard, Doug Esslinger – Bayard, Kevin Moore – Carroll, Juvenile Male – Bayard, Conner Weatherly – Bayard, Jeremy Evans – Dallas Center, Jeff Herron – Bayard and Brandon Niedowicz – Bayard.
Of note, David Elliott is alleged to have delivered controlled substances to a minor and Conner Weatherly is alleged to have used the Bayard City Park as a location for controlled substance delivery.
A total of four individuals were located during the search warrants with active arrest warrants: Charles Bradshaw Jr., Brandon Potter, David Elliott and Shawn Gifford. Due to the search warrants, their arrest warrants will be satisfied.
A total of three firearms were seized, along with $2,078 in suspected drug money. Marijuana, prescription drugs, methamphetamine and marijuana were also seized in the investigations.
Most importantly, five children were removed from homes where drug violations were alleged to have occurred. Five people face a total of fourteen counts of child endangerment: Doug Esslinger – two counts, Kelsey Stringer – three counts, Brandon Niedowicz – three counts, Rodney Blackmon – three counts and Shawn Gifford – three counts.
The following agencies assisted the Guthrie County Sheriff’s Office in these investigations: Audubon Police Department, Audubon County Sheriff’s Office, Carroll Police Department, Carroll County Sheriff’s Office, Dallas County Sheriff’s Office, Greene County Sheriff’s Office, Guthrie County Attorney’s Office, Jefferson Police Department, Panora Police Department, Iowa State Patrol, Iowa Department of Natural Resources, Iowa Department of Criminal Investigation – Criminalistics Laboratory, Iowa Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Enforcement – Investigations Division.
The Guthrie County Sheriff’s Office remains committed to pursuing drug violations in Guthrie County and the surrounding areas. Our office will answer the call 24/7 to handle these quality of life investigations.
These cases remain under investigation and additional charges may be pending and additional individuals may be arrested.
Sheriff Marty Arganbright
All criminal charges are merely accusations. All defendants in criminal matters are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty in the court of law.