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Details emerge in meth bust

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By Tris DeRoma

Los Alamos Police made several related drug busts recently, arresting five suspects in the process.

Arrested in the operation were Chris Sandy, 37, of 3806 Gold Street, Apt. 6; Daniel Hoth 29, of 3790 Gold Street, Apt. 2; Kevin Herring, 36, of 4039 D. Sycamore Street; Allan L. Houle, 26, of 156 Tunyo Street; and Barry Simmons 37.

The five suspects were apprehended after police received numerous tips the individuals were selling methamphetamine in Los Alamos and White Rock. After surveillance operations were set up outside of Sandy’s and Hoth’s apartments, police also learned that Hoth and Sandy often went on alleged “deliveries” together, of which police observed the two on several occasions in White Rock and Los Alamos.

On Nov. 6, the suspects were taken into custody without incident.

“This all comes after two arrests were made about a month ago, also trafficking methamphetamine,” said LAPD Commander Preston Ballew. “Meth is a destructive drug, many of our property crimes (burglaries and larcenies) stem from using this drug.”

According to police, Hoth and Simmons were arrested together in Hoth’s car at the Shell gas station in White Rock, 11 Rover Boulevard, in the process of allegedly selling methamphetamine. Police also located more of the suspect’s drugs at a house on Isleta Street, a house occupied by a Rowena MacDonald.

Items taken during the search and arrest included:

One 12.4 gram bag of methamphetamine, one 14 gram bag of methamphetamine and one 15.7 gram bag of methamphetamine. Police also recovered one small bag containing four 5 milligram valium pills, a glass pipe with what appeared to be smoking residue in it, 20 small plastic bags, one lighter, a pair of earphones, a black case, a black charger and a black backpack. 

Los Alamos Police picked up Rowena MacDonald in March of this year for being a fugitive from justice wanted in Missouri. She was apparently wanted by the St. Louis County Police for various charges relating to the manufacture and distribution of methamphetamine. The original charges were possession of a controlled substance, distributing a controlled substance after admitting to using meth and allowing others to manufacture the drug at her home, according to the St. Louis County Police.

Simmons and Hoth were both charged with trafficking a controlled substance, conspiracy, possession of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia. Hoth is currently being held at the Los Alamos Detention Center.

Hoth was later released on a $20,000 bond. He is due to appear in court Nov. 21.

Also taken from Hoth’s apartment during an arrest warrant were two baggies containing .6 grams of methamphetamine, $785 belonging to an unidentified suspect and various items of drug paraphernalia. 

Sandy was arrested on the same day at his apartment. He was charged with two counts of trafficking in controlled substances, conspiracy and use or possession of drug paraphernalia. 

Taken by police from his apartment were the following items: 3.2 grams of methamphetamine, a black case containing a broken glass pipe, a glass pipe with residue on it, a brown glass pipe, a green glass container, a lighter, a red water pipe and other assorted paraphernalia connected to the case. 

Sandy is still being held at the Los Alamos Detention Center on a $21,000 bond his next appearance in court is Nov. 21. 

Herring was also arrested at his apartment, and charged with possession of a controlled substance and use or possession of drug paraphernalia. Taken from his residence were .2 grams of methamphetamine, and various items of drug paraphernalia. Herring is still being held at the Los Alamos Detention Center on a $5,000 bond.

Houle was later arrested as well on a charge of trafficking in methamphetamine. Houle is also due to appear in court Nov. 21.

LAPD Commander Jason Wardlow-Herrera, said there were a number police officers involved and that they deserved all the credit in the success of the investigation. “This was a department-wide effort,” he said.