Drug Investigation

By Laura Bacon/NT Staff Writer

By Laura Bacon/NT Staff Writer

GUTHRIE COUNTY — A drug investigation in southwest Iowa between July 10 and Aug. 1 resulted in 12 search warrants and 20 arrests in Guthrie, Carroll and Audubon County.

The Guthrie Sheriff’s office reported that 10 warrants were executed in Guthrie County, one in Carroll and one in Audubon County. A total of 20 drug violators were arrested or have pending arrests, with 17 of those arrested on a felony charge or charges. One hundred criminal charges have been filed against 20 individuals, with 32 of the charges being filed as felonies. Of the 20 cases, 19 involved methamphetamine or ecstasy; one involved marijuana alone, but in that case, it was alleged the marijuana was for sale.

The following 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, Laura Smith, Gabriella Madison, Charles Bradshaw Jr., Shawn Lyons, Sherri Lyons, Doug Esslinger, a juvenile male, Conner Weatherly, Jeff Herron and Brandon Niedowicz, all of Bayard, along with Kevin Moore of Carroll and Jeremy Evans of Dallas Center.

The report noted that David Elliott allegedly delivered controlled substances to a minor, and Conner Weatherly allegedly used the Bayard City Park as a location for controlled substances delivery. A total of four individuals located during the search warrants had active arrest warrants, including Charles Bradshaw Jr., Brandon Potter, David Elliott and Shawn Gifford.

Three firearms, along with $2,078 in suspected drug money were seized in the investigation, along with marijuana, prescription drugs and methamphetamine.

The investigation resulted in the removal of five children from homes where drug violations were alleged to have occurred. Five individuals face a total of 14 counts of child endangerment, including Doug Esslinger – two counts, Kelsey Stringer – three counts, Brandon Niedowicz – three counts, Rodney Blackmon – three counts and Shawn Gifford – three counts.

Guthrie County Sheriff Marty Arganbright said the cases are still under investigation and additional charges may be pending and additional individuals may be arrested.

The Guthrie County Sheriff’s office was assisted by the Audubon Police Department, the Audubon County Sheriff’s office, the Carroll Police Department, the Carroll County Sheriff’s office, the Dallas County Sheriff’s office, the Greene County Sheriff’s office, the Guthrie County Attorney’s office, the Jefferson Police Department, the Panora Police Department, the Iowa State Patrol, the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, Iowa Department of Criminal Investigation – Criminalistics Laboratory, Iowa Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Enforcement – Investigations Division.

Arganbright said his office remained committed to pursuing drug violations in Guthrie County and the surrounding area, and his office would answer the call, 24/7, to handle these quality of life investigations.