Drug Smuggling Investigation at Silverdale

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HAMILTON COUNTY, Tenn. (WDEF)- A drug smuggling conspiracy investigation in Hamilton County has already turned up at least 10 suspects.

An unorthodox drug bust.

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“You know you hear people wanting to get out of jail you just don’t hear people coming up with an excuse or fictitious crime to be arrested” said Chief Deputy Austin Garrett.

10 people are being investigated by the Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office for a drug smuggling operation after detectives say Sara Meredith staged a domestic violence incident that led to her being locked up in the Silverdale Detention Center.

“When she was brought into the facility, a search warrant was obtained by the detectives for a body cavity search which is performed by a medical personnel” said Chief Garrett.

Narcotics, which included heroin, tobacco, 45 grams of meth and a charger were found in Meredith’s possession.

“There are occasions when body cavities are necessary” said Sheriff Jim Hammond.

While Meredith’s relationship to the other nine suspects is uncertain, three suspects, Falisha Daniels, Richard Gray, and Denesia Hemphill are still at large. They are encouraged to turn themselves in.

“Our fugitive division is on the street today actively searching for them” said Chief Garrett.

Chief Garrett says there is money to be made in smuggling contraband into jails and prisons.

“Cell phones, cell phone chargers, drugs, tobacco -tobacco is at a premium. Just to get that in there and you have people that are on the inside of facilities who are running these operations and you have people on the outside that are helping.”