UPDATE:20 Behind Bars After Butler Co. Drug Raid
From Butler County -- A mass drug raid that's been planned for months leaves 20 people behind bars.
The Alabama News Network crew was up at the break of dawn with authorities and followed them as they arrested 20 people across Butler County for various drug charges.
Investigators say following people have received Distribution of a Controlled Substance charges: Danny Crenshaw, Michael Simpson, James Kent, Sandra Soles, Carlos Crittenden, Santana Jones, Darious Howard, Betty Owens, Ollie Morris, Jonathan Acreman, Anthony Davidson, Willie Butler, Anricco Montgomery, Edward McCullough, Gerald Smith, Dauntavious Smith, Andre Key, Erin Garner, Chris Thompson andMarvin Rudolph.
Of those, four people received additional charges: Crittenden, Butler and Key were charged with Possession of a Controlled Substance. Owens was charged with Posession of Drug Paraphanalia.
They were arrests that came one after another.
Butler County Sheriff, Kenny Harden, says he hopes starting from the top of the chain will help prevent other crimes.
"Because a lot of people are stealing items, or robbing people, so they can get the drugs. If we do away with the sellers, they don't have anywhere to go to get it," Said Harden.
So how did authorities get inside information on these alleged distributors?
"We have confidential informants that are often times wired and they go in and buy dope or buy pills, marijuana anything like that and they come back and give that information or that substance to the Drug Task Force," Said Butler County District Attorney, Charlotte Tesmer.
It was a six month undercover operation and investigators say they found evidence showing they were selling prescription pills, marijuana and/or crack cocaine. Authorities also seized a car and several weapons.
Most of the arrests were made in Greenville.
"To me, it doesn't matter how big or how small [the drug find] or whatever... any opportunity to get the drugs off the street, that's what we should do," Said Greenville Mayor, Dexter McLendon.
Investigators tell us in addition to having those confidential informants come forward, some of their leads came from complaints made by neighbors. They're encouraging you to stay alert in your neighborhood for possible criminal activity.
The 2nd Judicial Drug Task Force and District Attorney's Office, the Greenville Police Department and the Butler County Sheriff's Office helped with the raids.
Agents tell us more arrests will be made.