21 arrested in connection to bath salts - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

21 arrested in undercover bath salts operation

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DARLINGTON COUNTY, SC (WMBF) The Darlington County Drug Enforcement Unit arrested 21 people on multiple drug-related charges following a two-day undercover operation. The arrests largely involved the possession of, distribution of and attempt to buy the drug known as "bath salts."

All 21 arrests were made at the 1600 block of South Main Street in Darlington at Foxy Video.

"Dangerous drugs like bath salts are terrorizing our communities and destroying our lives. We will take the strictest measures to eradicate them," Darlington County Sheriff Wayne Byrd said.

Bath salts are not to be confused with the cleansing product with the same name.

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency banned mephedrone, MDPV and methylone last year, three of the components that make up the illegal form of bath salts. The illegal bath salts are an inexpensive, synthetic, super-charged form of speed made with potpourri.

Some drug experts describe bath salts to alter the mental status that could be up to 13 times more potent than cocaine. The experts say this leads to panic attacks, agitation, paranoia, hallucinations and violent behavior.

The arrests were made on June 5 and June 7.

The following is a list of those arrested, and their charges:

Victor Balin, 36, of Darlington, Distribution of Schedule I controlled substance, Possession with the intent to distribute Schedule I controlled substance

Douglas W. Pearce, 75, Hartsville, Possession of Schedule I controlled substance, Attempt to purchase Schedule I controlled substance, Possession of Schedule III controlled substance, Possession of Schedule IV controlled substance

Christopher Lee Davis, 29, of Hartsville, Attempt to purchase Schedule I controlled substance

Jodi Turnage, 49, of Hartsville, Attempt to purchase a Schedule I controlled substance

Steve Stewart, 43, of Hartsville, Attempt to purchase a Schedule I controlled substance

Bradley Kelly, 18, of Darlington, Driving under suspension, Attempt to purchase a Schedule I controlled substance

Rebekah Barilla, 39, of Hartsville, Possession of Schedule I controlled substance, possession of Schedule III controlled substance, possession of Schedule IV controlled substance

June 7, 2012 arrests

Michael Morris, 61, of Florence, Attempt to purchase a Schedule I controlled substance

Judy Langley, 55, of Cheraw, Attempt to purchase a Schedule I controlled substance

Brian Malin, 45, of Darlington, Attempt to purchase a Schedule I controlled substance

Maxine Hickey, 27, of Wallace, Attempt to purchase a Schedule I controlled substance

Steven Watts of Hartsville, Attempt to purchase a Schedule I controlled substance

Sarah Freeman, 38, of Patrick, Attempt to purchase a Schedule I controlled substance

Johnny Evans, 52, of Darlington, Attempt to purchase a Schedule I controlled substance, Possession of Schedule I controlled substance

Christopher Evans, 41, of Scranton, Attempt to purchase a Schedule I controlled substance

Gideon Brown Jr., 59, 97 McKel Circle, Bishopville, SC, Attempt to purchase a Schedule I controlled substance, Possession of Schedule III controlled substance

Laura Hardee, 48, of Effingham, Attempt to purchase a Schedule I controlled substance

Mildred Gulledge, 45, of Patrick, Attempt to purchase a Schedule I controlled substance, Simple possession of marijuana

Thomas Henry, 23 of Wallace, Attempt to purchase a Schedule I controlled substance

Mitchell Henry, 42 of Kannapolis, NC, Attempt to purchase a Schedule I controlled substance

Christopher Woodward, 34 of Cheraw, Attempt to purchase a Schedule I controlled substance

Booking records for the Darlington County Detention Center show most of those arrested in this undercover operation had been released by Saturday morning.

Copyright 2012 WMBF News. All rights reserved.

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