More than a dozen arrested in Valentine's Day drug round up - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

More than a dozen arrested in Valentine's Day drug round up

HANCOCK COUNTY, MS (WLOX) -

Before the sun came up, Hancock County narcotics agents were out making arrests.

"When you knock on someone's door at three or four in the morning it can go bad in a hurry but our guys are prepared so they do their homework," Sheriff Ricky Adam said.

But there is always a chance things could go wrong, Director of Narcotics Jeremy Skinner said even those wanted for petty crimes can get violent.

"It's not always how bad the person is it is how bad they don't want to go to jail," Skinner said.

Luckily, this round up went smoothly. Deputies were on the hunt for 14 people and 12 of those were arrested within a few hours. One other person was picked up later in the day. Most face felony charges for selling drugs.

"It's always going to be an ongoing battle, but those are the people we like to target, bringing it in and transfer of the drugs, whether it be selling or giving, whatever it is," Skinner said.

Sheriff Adam said raids like this not only get drugs off the street, the arrests take a bite out of other crimes.

"It's a proven fact where drug dealers and drug users are going to lead to other crimes robberies, burglaries. And we have been having a lot of spikes in burglary lately. Taking this will take some of that off the street as well," Adam said.

"Since we came in as an administration, we have focused on narcotics in the county and I think the numbers have really shown in the people we have arrested and the indictment rate," Skinner said.

The amount of drug arrests went up 343 percent in 2012.

"I said it when I was campaigning and I'm going to say it again, if you are going to use dope in Hancock County, we are coming. We are coming," Adam warned.

Agents are still looking for Jesse Acker of Pearlington. Anyone with information on Acker is asked to call the Hancock County Sheriff's Department at (228) 466-6904.

Those arrested Thursday include:

Verina Palmer, 25 of Kiln, 2 counts sale of a controlled Substance

Tobias Collins, 19 of Bay St. Louis, sale of a controlled substance

Robert Maurigi, 50 of Bay St. Louis, sale of a controlled substance

Patrick Hall, 40 of Catahoula, sale of a controlled substance

Jodie Barrilleaux, 30 of Kiln, sale of a controlled substance

Keith Walter Jr., 30 of Bay St. Louis, possession of a controlled substance

Jessica Bernard, 32 of Diamondhead, sale of a controlled substance

Jerry Brewer, 61 of Kiln, 3 counts sale of a controlled substance

Betty Brewer, 58 of Kiln, sale of a controlled substance

Rose Martin, 53 of Bayside, two counts sale of a controlled substance

Angel Case, 45 of Diamondhead, possession of a controlled substance

Jonathan Jarvis, 24 of Pearlington, sale of a controlled substance

Donna Vickers of Bay St. Louis

Copyright 2013 WLOX. All rights reserved.

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