Thursday, June 1, 2017

Record Drug Bust in Fort Thomas Apartment

Lt. Casey Kilgore of the Fort Thomas Police reviews case files for the biggest bust of cultivated marijuana in Fort Thomas Police department's history. FTM file. 
A record amount of processed marijuana, cash, other narcotics and paraphernalia were seized from a Fort Thomas apartment on Saturday, May 20.

Lieutenant Casey Kilgore said Fort Thomas officers conducted an investigation Saturday night at around 10:15 p.m. at an apartment at Sonsrena Apartments after getting a complaint from a neighbor that a smell of marijuana was coming from a nearby apartment.

John Barnett, 21 and the resident of the apartment, was charged with trafficking in marijuana after police found over four pounds of pot. Kilgore said that the street value for that amount of pot was over $37,000.

John Barnett. Campbell County Detention Center. 

Barnett was also charged with possession of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia. According to the police, Barnett admitted that everything in the apartment belonged to him.

Officer Brandon Laffin originally responded to the call and found more than ten people in the apartment.

Kilgore said that the odor of marijuana was so strong that Laffin knew he had to act.

"We get calls for this type of thing pretty often," he said. "But these guys took the initiative. To secure the apartment, the ten people in there to make sure they weren't going to tamper with the evidence or scene was impressive enough. Waking up a judge at 10:15 on a Saturday night to get a warrant isn't the most ideal scenario, but our guys knew it had to be done. 

It was a simple call that could have been overlooked and it turned out that we were able to stop these drugs from hitting our community. Hats off to our officers."

Laffin was assisted in his investigation by Sgt. Brent Moening and Officer Matt Marksbury.

According to police, they also found a $24,000 in cash, money counters, a 45-caliber handgun, digital scales for weighing drugs, plastic bags and rubber bands to separate and distribute the drugs and a "white-powdery" substance that would need to be tested in a lab to determine what it was.


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Kilgore, who has been with the department since 2000, said it was the largest bust of drugs he can remember. Chief Mike Daly concurred that in his 22 years with the department, it was the biggest seizure of processed and ready to be distributed narcotics the department had intercepted.

In 2006, the department seized 100 marijuana plants at a house on Brentwood Place. Back then, officers busted 32-year old, Ryan Jacobs, with cultivating a grow operation with a street value of more than $250,000.

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The "white powdery" substance found at the scene. This yielded the second charge of possession of a controlled substance.  Provided. 


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