The Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office has arrested a Vale couple on charges of selling a large amount of opiates to an undercover detective while their 2-year-old son sat and watched.
In one instance, detectives say the boy sat next to an undercover detectives and as the child’s mother counted out pills for the drug deal. Narcotics detectives say the residence itself was unfit to live in and there were roaches everywhere during the buys.
Detectives say they seized more than 50 grams of opiate-based pills over multiple buys.
“This couple did not blink an eye when selling us the pills, all the while with their young child present,” says Narcotics Lt. Jon Propst. “These trafficking charges are the some of the most severe state-level drug charges someone can receive.”
Detectives contacted the Lincoln County Department of Social Services Child Protective Services and reported the matter. DSS workers responded during the arrests and placed the children with another couple to watch temporarily, officials said.
“After seeing the living condition of the home and understanding the dangers associated with drug activity, especially drug sales, we decided to act much quicker than normal. At that point the child’s safety became priority over continuing a drug investigation,” Propst said.
Betsy May Carpenter, 32 of 6373 Dixie Lane, Vale, was charged with two felony counts each of selling and delivering trafficked opiates, trafficking by possession, possession with intent to sell or deliver and maintaining a dwelling for controlled substances. She was also charged with one misdemeanor count of child abuse and received a $100,000 secured bond.
James Steven Fredell, 38 of 6373 Dixie Lane, Vale, was charged with one felony count each selling and delivering trafficked opiates, trafficking opiates by possession, possession with intent to sell or deliver and conspire to traffic opiates. He was also charged with one misdemeanor count of child abuse and received an $85,000 secured bond.