Covington-Newton County Special Investigations Unit agents arrested and charged a Newton County couple with possession of methamphetamines with intent to distribute on Thursday afternoon after receiving complaints about their drug selling activities.
Shane Crane, 33, and his girlfriend Stephanie Cox, 29, were also charged with possession of marijuana less than an ounce and violation of the Georgia Controlled Substances Act, after a search of their Newton Drive residence turned up a "substantial amount" of methamphetamines and a half ounce of marijuana in their bedroom, according to Lt. Philip Bradford, SIU commander.
Bradford said his unit received many calls about Crane's drug dealing activities in the neighborhood -- an older, established place without a lot of criminal activity.
Bradford was familiar with Crane from previous run-ins and confirmed with Crane's parole officer that he was under high risk supervision and waived his Fourth Amendment rights. This meant he could be searched anytime as long as there was reasonable suspicion.
People on parole or probation for narcotics charges typically waive their Fourth Amendment rights, said Bradford.
When SIU agents and Covington Police Officer Brent Fuesting arrived at Crane's house, the couple and another female associate gave no resistance, said Bradford.
"This shows how the system can work if used properly against these repeat offenders," said Bradford.
Crane has an extensive criminal history stretching back to at least 1993 and was previously sentenced for robbery in Clayton County, possession of cocaine and other drugs in Newton County, and possession of methamphetamine in Rockdale County. He was incarcerated until May last year, according to his record on the Georgia Department of Corrections Web site.
Bradford said he had not heard complaints about Cox.
"Everybody kept calling about Shane Crane," said Bradford, "but she had knowledge of (the drugs). In the state of Georgia, knowledge is possession."
He said his unit will often get many calls about smaller dealers like Crane who are easier to notice because they have more traffic going in and out of their residence. Bigger level vendors who deal with larger amounts of drugs are harder to spot because they have less traffic, said Bradford.