Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Missouri sheriff, whose county had few meth arrests, is charged with distributing the drug

Carter County, Missouri (Wikipedia map) appeared to be resisting the state trend in increasing methamphetamine raids and arrests, but that may have been a result of corrupt law enforcement. "Tommy Adams, county sheriff for a little more than two years, was arrested earlier this month after giving meth to an informant at his cabin on a remote and hilly gravel road, according to a court document," Jim Salter of The Associated Press reports. "Authorities would not detail the extent of Adams' alleged meth involvement, but charged him with meth distribution."

Missouri led the country in meth lab busts every year for a decade, reporting over 13,000 in the last seven years, before Tennessee took the top spot in 2010. Other rural Missouri law enforcement officials have been linked to drugs, but Adams is the first to be arrested for meth. Just days after Adams' arrest, his chief deputy was charged with burglary and receiving stolen property, a gun taken from the department's evidence room, Salter writes.

When Adams ran for sheriff his opponent, an incumbent Democrat, died just weeks before the election in what was ruled a suicide. Democrats had no chance to replace him on the ballot, but Adams won the election by only one vote. (A few years ago, Missouri voters elected senator Gov. Mel Carnahan, who had died in a plane crash days before the election.) While other Southern Missouri counties had dozens of meth lab busts in recent years, Carter County had just five since Adams took over as sheriff in 2009. (Read more)

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