By Nita Johnson
LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. — Two teams of detectives made two separate arrests on Tuesday afternoon involving drug trafficking within 1,000 feet of a school.
The school buses were long gone when the arrests occurred but the four people arrested in the drug trafficking ring were home.
Marijuana was the culprit involved in the arrests that sent 27-year-old Joshua Hess, 29-year-old Clayton Blanton, 23-year-old Jerry Russell and 28-year-old Michelle Russell to the Laurel County Detention Center for selling drugs in close proximity of South Laurel High School.
Hess and Blanton were arrested on Apartment Complex Road, which borders the school property. Both were charged with trafficking in a controlled substance within 1,000 feet of a school and trafficking in marijuana, less than 8 ounces.
At the same time, the Russells were arrested at Finley Trailer Park Road, one mile south of London, and charged with trafficking in marijuana, less than 8 ounces.
Laurel County Sheriff’s officials involved in the arrests were Detective Jason Back, Deputy James Sizemore, Senior Sgt. Greg Poynter, Deputy Tyler Morris, and Deputy Gilbert Acciardo. Items seized during the arrests included bags of marijuana, pipes, needles, scales, cash and drug paraphernalia.
A fifth person believed to be involved with the drug trafficking ring was interviewed and additional arrests are expected. Detective Jason Back an Deputy James Sizemore are continuing the investigation.