Canine unit assists in Labor Day arrest

On October 7, a young man who has been in frequent contact with law enforcement will have a preliminary hearing on two sets of drug distribution charges.

Corey Crawford was arrested in March of 2011 and convicted in September of that year for possession of opiates. He served prison time for that offense.

Just after Thanksgiving of last year, Crawford was charged in relation to an incident where he and another man were in a home when an Augusta man overdosed on a combination of prescription and illegal drugs.

While he was still awaiting trial on those charges he became the target of one of Augusta Safety Department K9 Officer Rico’s 92 deployments in his 22 months in service with Sgt. Chad McCluskey.

On August 31, Sgt. McCluskey was on patrol near Santa Fe Lake when the Butler County Sheriff’s Department called for his assistance with a vehicle that was believed to be trespassing on land nearby.

McCluskey and Rico arrived at the land in the 18000 block of Hillcreek Rd. and began to investigate the vehicle. As soon as Rico began the investigation, he “hit” on the front passenger door.

When a trained K9 officer hits on a car, officers have sufficient probable cause to search a vehicle.

When a search of Crawford’s car was completed, more than $1,500 worth of cocaine and heroin were found along with paraphernalia used in the distribution of drugs and some marijuana as well.

Crawford was charged and bonded out of jail the following week. But before he could make it to his next court appearance, Crawford was busted again, this time for possession of heroin and paraphernalia on September 17.

Crawford bonded out again and will face all of the charges on October 7 in a combined preliminary hearing.