17 Arrested on Felony Charges in Morning Round Up

SAL RIDEALONG PICThe 5 AM wake up call some Greenville residents received was not exactly pleasant.

“It’s the police, come to the door!” Sergeant Tommy Anderson shouted at a closed door. Nearly two dozen homes were visited by Greenville Police and Butler County Deputies early Thursday morning during an organized round up.

The round up was the finale of months of hard work from the 2nd Judicial Drug Task Force, Butler County Sheriff’s Office and Greenville Police. The group gathered a list of people wanted on felony drug charges and teamed up to arrest 17 out of the total 20.

“It’s not anybody’s fault but their fault,” says Police Chief Lonzo Ingram. “They made the decision to sell drugs. And therefore, if you’re going to sell drugs in Greenville or Butler County, then eventually we will come to see you.”

SAL RIDEALONG PIC2Thursday’s round up is something that almost did not happen. Last year, the state cut funding to drug task forces across Alabama. This left cities and counties with the difficult decision to either find other funding for task forces or disband them altogether. Butler County Sheriff Kenny Harden and Chief Ingram both used some of their budgets to fund the 2nd Judicial Task Force, because they knew the work needed to continue.

“Last year we were named safest county in the state, and the city was named the safest city in the state,” says Harden. “And it has a lot to contribute to drugs. The harder they work them, the safer it is here.”

These 17 subjects are being held at the Butler County Correctional Facility while they wait for bond hearings. Until a judge makes the final decision, they will be held on bonds of $20,000 for each felony distribution charge.

“We actually got some more drugs this morning, when we arrested some of them, so there’ll be some more charges coming,” adds Harden.

The men and women out working the streets before residents are even awake do not want fanfare or any kind of special thank you. A safe and happy community is the only reward they need.

SAL RIDEALONG PIC3“That’s what we’re all trying to do. We’re trying to make Greenville a better place to live, a better place to raise our kids,” says Assistant District Attorney Steve Townes. “And just, overall, a safer place for not only the citizens, but for those that visit Greenville.”

The authorities are still looking for three more people on their list.

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