Sheriff makes two more arrests in Operation Pill Sweep

Published 10:31 am Monday, June 27, 2011

by Barbara Tilly and Leah Justice

The Polk County Sheriff’s Office arrested a Columbus man and a Saluda woman in Operation Pill Sweep.

Andrew Hamilton, of 1237 Bill Collins Road in Columbus, was arrested and charged with one count of felony selling and delivering a schedule IV controlled substance and one count of felony maintaining a vehicle/dwelling/place for a controlled substance, according to Polk County Sheriff Donald Hill.

Andrew Hamilton

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Marci Hornbeck Inman, of 137 Stone Water Lane in Saluda, was arrested and charged with one county of felony trafficking of opium or heroin and one count of felony maintaining a vehicle/dwelling/place for a controlled substance, Hill said.

The arrests were part of a nine-month undercover operation conducted by the sheriff’s office to clean up illegal prescription medication in the county. Hill said his office has warrants for more than 20 individuals and arrests will continue to be made over the next few weeks.

The sheriff’s office purchased an estimated 2,000 illegal prescription pills during the undercover operation.

Marci Hornbeck Inman

Hill said he is not negotiating prosecution of the cases. He also said suspects include people from all walks of life regardless of sex, race or social status.

The operation has involved the N.C. State Bureau of Investigation, the U.S. Veteran’s Affairs, the Buncombe County, N.C., and theSpartanburg County, S.C. sheriff’s offices.

Hill said charges filed during the operation have been related to many illegal substances in addition to illegal prescription medications, including cocaine, heroin, opium and marijuana.

A couple of suspects have also been charged with child abuse, because illegal transactions were conducted in the presence of children, according to Hill.

Inman was given a $5,000 bond and Hamilton was given a $10,000 bond, according to sheriff reports.