A multi-agency investigation led to the arrest of a Denver man on drug charges.
Steven Earl Abernethy, 35, was charged with the following felonies: trafficking by sale of crystal methamphetamine, trafficking by delivery of crystal methamphetamine, trafficking by transportation of crystal methamphetamine and trafficking by possession of crystal methamphetamine over 400 grams as well as other felony drug charges in neighboring counties.
A magistrate set bond at $750,000.
Two others are facing charges as well.
George Allen Bailer Jr. and Amanda Louise Collins, both of Newton, were also arrested. They were charged with felony conspiracy to traffic crystal methamphetamine. Bailer was also charged with felony trafficking crystal methamphetamine by transportation and felony trafficking crystal methamphetamine by possession. He is in custody in Georgia on narcotics charges unrelated to this investigation and is awaiting extradition back to Iredell County.
Collins was charged with felony conspiracy to traffic crystal methamphetamine, felony possession of crystal methamphetamine, felony possession with intent to sell/deliver crystal methamphetamine and felony sell or deliver crystal methamphetamine. She is in custody in Guilford County awaiting return to Iredell County.
In a news release, Iredell Sheriff Darren Campbell said, Iredell County Sheriff’s Office narcotics investigators, along with members of the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation, the Catawba County Sheriff’s Office Narcotics Unit, Lincoln County Sheriff’s office Narcotics Unit and North Carolina Department of Probation and Parole, were involved in the investigation.
“In June of this year, Iredell County Sheriff’s Office narcotics investigators identified Abernethy as an individual distributing large amounts of crystal methamphetamine in Iredell and the surrounding counties. With assistance from the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigations, the Catawba County Sheriff’s Office Narcotics Unit, and the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office Narcotics Unit, Iredell County Sheriff’s Office Undercover Narcotics investigators were able to purchase over approximately 1,000 grams or over two pounds, of crystal methamphetamine, directly from Abernethy. During the investigation, it was learned Abernethy was obtaining the narcotics from out of state,” Campbell said.
During the investigation, he said, Iredell narcotics investigators identified Bailer and Collins as associates of Abernethy and assisted him in the distribution of crystal methamphetamine in Iredell, Catawba and Lincoln counties.
He said after Abernethy’s arrest in Lincoln County, a half-pound of crystal methamphetamine was found inside his residence.
“The street value of the crystal methamphetamine seized in Iredell was approximately $58,000, in Catawba County approximately $44,600 and in Lincoln County $25,500 for a total of $128,100 worth of drug off of the streets of our counties. Cooperation, communication, and teamwork such as this, between our agencies is another example of us all working together to fight drug trafficking in our counties to make them all a safer place,” Campbell added.
Abernethy’s history includes felony assault on a probation officer, felony possession of methamphetamine, felony possession of Schedule II and misdemeanor charges of shoplifting by concealment, larceny, worthless check and DWI.
Due to Bailer and Collins being in custody out of Iredell County, photos were not available.