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Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Fulton searches for Sharp man on drug charges

Thursday, February 12, 2004

Staff Writer

A Sharp County man faces charges in Sharp and Fulton counties after two searches of his residences uncover drugs and related paraphernalia.

Dewan Duncan, 42, and three other people were arrested Feb. 7 after police recovered large quantities of marijuana and processed methamphetamine from a rented cabin at Spring River Beach Club.

Duncan, Brian Shackelford, 33, Aimee Blansett, 27, and Greg Larson, 41, were transported to the Sharp County jail.

Duncan, Shackelford and Larson are charged with possession of a controlled substance. Blansett is charged with possession of an instrument of crime -- paraphernalia.

Duncan and Larson were released and Blansett and Shackelford remained in jail Monday at press time. They were scheduled to have bond set that afternoon.

The bust occurred after Sharp County Deputy Mike Zeiger went to deliver civil papers to a woman staying in another cabin in the area. When Zeiger got out of the car, he detected a strong scent of ether, he said.

Zeiger searched the area for the source of the scent and found it coming from cabin 25. He said he consulted his superior officer and was told to conduct a "knock and talk," which calls for an officer to knock on the door, explain the circumstances and ask to search the premises.

Zeiger said Duncan answered the door and gave consent but told him they were "not cooking dope."

Zeiger said he didn't find anything in the main area of the cabin where Duncan and Larson were sitting, but was surprised to find one of the bedroom doors locked.

"He told me Amy Blansett and Brian Shackelford were inside," Zeiger said. "I told them they needed to come out and they did."

Once inside the room, Zeiger found a purse with drug paraphernalia inside, he said. A pillow in the room also hid the methamphetamine and marijuana, Zeiger said.

"The items found indicated the intent to distribute," Zeiger said. "Baggies and scales were found in the cabin."

The cabin was rented in Duncan's name, Zeiger said. All four suspects listed the cabin as their address. The investigation is continuing.

Also that day, Fulton County Sheriff's Department and 16th Judicial District Drug Task Force agents executed a search warrant at Duncan's former residence in the Fulton County portion of Hardy. The sheriff's department was alerted to possible drug activity at the residence by the 3rd Judicial District Drug Task Force.

At the property officers found numerous items used in the manufacture of methamphetamine. On Feb. 9 Duncan was formally charged with possession of drug paraphernalia with the intent to manufacture methamphetamine, a class B felony. His bond was set at $10,000.

Duncan is not in custody in Fulton County. Fulton County Chief Deputy Carrol Traw said his department put a hold on Duncan when it learned he was in custody in Sharp County, but Sharp County Sheriff's Department released Duncan before receiving the hold.

The investigation in continuing.

Local authorities arrested Dennis Vardell, 47, after a search of his Williford home Feb. 3.

Officers with the Sharp County Sheriff's Office, 3rd Judicial Drug Task Force and the Arkansas State Police found approximately one and one half pounds of marijuana, with an estimated street value of $2,880, Sharp County Sheriff Dale Weaver said. Officers also recovered drug paraphernalia and several firearms, Weaver said.

Vardell is charged with possession with intent to manufacture a controlled substance, possession of an instrument of crime -- paraphernalia, and simultaneous possession of drugs and firearms.

Vardell posted a $20,000 bond and is scheduled to appear in court Feb. 17.

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