An investigation conducted by Sulphur Springs-Hopkins County Special Crimes Unit into alleged methamphetamine distribution in Sulphur Springs came to a head this week with three people arrested in two days.
After several weeks on the case, SCU investigators received information that 24-year-old Jamie Lee Arnold might be involved in the meth trade within the city limits of Sulphur Springs.
SCU Sgt. Harold McClure said local law enforcement officers were asked Monday to be on the lookout for Arnold after learning the Sulphur Springs man was wanted on misdemeanor warrants for seat belt and driver’s license violations.
On Monday, sheriff’s deputies had occasion to stop Arnold’s girlfriend, 21-year-old Jessica Nikole Hall, and one of her relatives, 29-year-old Adrian Jamaal Godbolt, as the pair were traveling in town. Both were arrested by deputy Wade Sheets for possession of methamphetamine in a drug-free zone.
After further investigation, SCU officers obtained a warrant to search the home Arnold shares with Hall. The search late Monday at 221 Houston St., a drug-free zone because of its proximity to Water Oak School on North Davis Street, turned up firearms, some meth and packets commonly used for meth distribution. Hall was not at home at the time of the search, according to McClure.
SCU officers took the evidence to the district attorney and obtained a warrant for Arnold’s arrest Tuesday for unlawful possession of a firearm by a felon, noting that “Mr. Arnold is a twice convicted felon.” Local authorities were made aware of the felony warrant.
Sheriff’s officers were the first to spot Arnold Tuesday. He was a passenger in a silver Ford at the sheriff’s office. The car pulled out of the station. A deputy, aware of the Hopkins County firearm charge and other details of the case, followed the car until an additional unit could provide back up as a precaution. Cpl. Dennis Findley and deputy Todd Evans stopped the car on Oak Avenue at Martin Luther King Jr. Drive. SCU Sgt. Tony Crouse responded at the location to assist in Arnold’s arrest.
A search of the car revealed two loaded pistols behind the front passenger seat, a Smith and Wesson 9 mm and a Smith & Wesson 10 mm. The 9 mm pistol was later determined to have been reported stolen as a result of a burglary in Mesquite where another firearm and electronic equipment were also said to have been taken.
Arnold was charged with unlawful possession of firearm by felon and theft of a firearm, as well as the warrants for possession of a firearm by a felon and misdemeanor city warrants. The driver was not charged in connection with the guns, according to arrest reports.
Arnold remained in Hopkins County jail early Wednesday morning on all five charges. Hall was released from jail Tuesday on $20,000 bond on the possession of a controlled substance in a drug-free zone charge she was arrested on Monday. Godbolt remained in jail in lieu of bond on the possession charge, according to jail reports.
“This investigation of Mr. Arnold is continuing,” McClure said. “There could be more state and federal charges to come. I’ve been in touch with [federal agents] in reference to this investigation. They will be reviewing it for possible prosecution.”
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