The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

Police/Courts

June 9, 2011

Beckley Police drug investigation nets two arrests

The Beckley Police Department’s Drug Unit arrested two men on felony drug charges in Uptown Beckley Tuesday night.

Officers concluded a several-months-long investigation with the arrests of Frederick Butler, 36, and Alfred Armstead, 38, near Neville Street shortly before 9 p.m., said Drug Unit Detective Lt. Gant Montgomery.

Montgomery said the unit had been gathering intelligence and information on the men for at least six months and had been interacting undercover with them in the few days preceding the arrest.

“We had been making controlled drug buys off of them for the last couple of days,” he said. “We’ve been purchasing heroin, and last night, we decided we would go ahead and arrest them on those charges.”

Montgomery said the officers had purchased drugs from the pair earlier in the day and later spotted them attempting to park a Jeep Cherokee vehicle on Neville Street.

Butler, the driver at the time, fled the scene, Montgomery said, when officers moved into arrest the men.

Detective Bryan Atterson pursued Butler to an area near Prince Street and ironically, the Beckley Police Department, Montgomery said. Atterson made the arrest with the help of several on-duty, uniformed officers.

Meanwhile, Montgomery and Detective Dean Bailey arrested Armstead.

Montgomery said officers found $200 to $300 worth of heroin in Butler’s pocket at the time of arrest as well as $200 worth of cocaine and $1,000 cash. Butler was charged with two counts of delivery of a controlled substance, two counts of possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance and fleeing from a police officer, Montgomery said.

Armstead was charged with one count of delivery of a controlled substance, one count of possession of marijuana and receiving stolen property, the latter charge from a separate incident, Montgomery said.

Armstead, of Charlotte, N.C., has ties to the Beckley area and has been back and forth between the area and North Carolina, Montgomery said. Butler said he is from New York, Montgomery added, but identification found on him indicated he was from Ohio. Montgomery said he believes the drugs came from New York.

Officers executed search warrants at Willbrian Apartments, where the men had been living off and on with other individuals, Montgomery said. Police found further evidence at the scene, he said.

Both Butler and Armstead were arraigned before Magistrate Steve Massie in Raleigh County on Wednesday, Montgomery said. The men were remanded to Southern Regional Jail and held on $500,000 bond each.

Montgomery stated “it’s not their first go-round” for the two men and said Butler’s record includes a federal drug conviction.

Montgomery thanked his four-man drug unit as well as the uniformed officers who assisted in Butler’s arrest.

— E-mail: nbrockman@register-herald.com

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