Drug Bust In Letcher County

Prep work began early to make sure all the paperwork was in line to take twenty one alleged drug dealers into custody.

Once the first arrests were made, the clock starts ticking.

"It's a network of who's helping who out. They'll launch phone calls saying that somebody's been picked up or they heard this or they heard that. And people started moving around and moving out of the county or going to places to hide," said Chief Deputy Brian Damron with the Letcher County Sheriff's Office.

It seemed for every house the Letcher County Sheriff's deputies came up empty, they found who they were looking for at the next house.

This neighborhood guard was not enough to keep Billy Hubbs of Patridge from being arrested...he's charged with first degree trafficking.

"We just want everyone to know that when complaints come in we check them out, and if these individuals, whether they've never been to prison or prosecuted before or not, we're still gonna look at them," said Paul Hayes with Operation UNITE.

Operation UNITE conducted the year long investigations and all alleged dealers were taken into custody with the help of several Letcher County Sheriff's deputies.

Here is a list of all that have been taken into custody so far:

• Wayne Back, age 45, of Linefork, second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance and second-degree persistent felony offender.

• Billy Ray Fields, age 54, of Court Road, Partridge, second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance. At the time of his arrest a quantity of hydrocodone was found and he will be charged with a second count of second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance.

• Clarence Halcomb, age 55, of Galloway Acres, Partridge, first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance and first-degree persistent felony offender.

• Billy Hubbs, age 50, of Highway 3073, Partridge, first-degree trafficking in a controlled substance.

• Johnny Osborne, age 44, Highway 199 South, Partridge, second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance and first-degree persistent felony offender.

• George Thomas, age 69, Circle Drive, Whitesburg, second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance and first-degree persistent felony offender.

• Matthew Alan Whitaker, age 25, of Highway 119 South, Partridge, second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance and first-degree persistent felony offender.


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