Sheriff’s office arrests 7 after community tips lead to drug bust

From top left, FASULO, GARDNER, GILLIKIN, PINER, SALTER JR., SIMMONS and SMITH (Contributed photos)

BEAUFORT — Seven people were arrested after the Carteret County Sheriff’s Office received numerous complaints regarding drug activity in the county.

According to a news release from the CCSO, detectives began investigating a home on Nine Foot Road in Newport during the month of December after learning the residence may be serving as a location for the distribution of heroin and methamphetamine. Over the course of the investigation, surveillance revealed individuals reportedly known for the distribution of illegal drugs were allegedly seen entering and exiting a shed behind the home at 428 Nine Foot Road.

On Dec. 31, detectives responded to the home to speak with the resident, Angela Lynn Simmons. When detectives approached the home, they allegedly observed drug paraphernalia lying in plain sight. When Ms. Simmons was questioned by detectives, she reportedly gave consent to search the home.

During the search, detectives reported recovering 11 grams of heroin, 21 grams of methamphetamine, 13 grams of marijuana and two handguns.

Ms. Simmons, 46, was arrested and charged with trafficking heroin, possessing methamphetamine with the intent to manufacture, sell and deliver, manufacturing methamphetamine, maintaining a dwelling to sell or store a controlled substance, possessing marijuana with the intent to manufacture, sell and deliver and manufacturing marijuana. She is being held at the Carteret County jail in Beaufort under a $500,000 bond.

As detectives were wrapping up their investigation Dec. 31, three vehicles reportedly approached the home. Not aware of the presence of law enforcement inside the home, the occupants of the vehicle were allegedly there with the intent to purchase illegal drugs. Detectives reportedly seized heroin, methamphetamine and one handgun from the occupants of the vehicle.

Detectives arrested Jason Daniel Gillikin, 45, of Otway, and charged him with possessing heroin with the intent to sell and deliver, selling heroin, delivering heroin, manufacturing a schedule I controlled substance, conspiring to sell a schedule I controlled substance, conspiring to sell a schedule II controlled substance, delivering a schedule II controlled substance, manufacturing a schedule II controlled substance, selling a schedule II controlled substance and maintaining a dwelling to sell or store a controlled substance. His bond was set at $75,000.

Over the course of the last few months, detectives were actively investigating Mr. Gillikin as a possibly primary source for illegal drugs in the Down East communities of Carteret County.

Detectives also arrested 26-year-old Frankie Wayne Salter Jr., of Sea Level, 21-year-old Jessica Sue Fasulo, of Sea Level, 44-year-old Michael Scott Piner, of Newport, 23-year-old William Cody Smith, of Morehead City, and 21-year-old Steven Garrett Gardner, of Newport, after completing the narcotics investigation.

“Everything starts with the citizens in the community and this is another great example of the important role citizens can play in their community,” County Sheriff Asa Buck said in the release. “The outcome of these cases are successful because of tips we received from the community. We encourage to report any suspicious activity they may be seeing in their neighborhood and allow us to investigate.”

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