Husband, wife charged with trafficking

Published 8:24 pm Thursday, October 26, 2017

A Chocowinity husband and wife have been charged with trafficking in prescription pain pills.

Linda Rivers, 51, and Richard James Garrison, 50, both of 479 Gray Road in Chocowinity, were arrested this week by investigators with the Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office Drug Unit. They were charged with trafficking in Oxycodone pills.

Lt. Russell Davenport, head of the drug unit, said investigators were alerted to the case by complaints of drug activity, but this case was harder than most: the couple had legally prescribed pain medication, but they were reselling it, which is illegal.

“We’ve been investigating them for about a year,” Davenport said. “These investigations are kind of tough on us because people got to the doctor, they get a prescription for it and they sell it to make money. … When they’re selling prescription drugs that they have a prescription for, we’ve got to show they’re actually selling them. … The complaints lead us in the right direction, and then we have to do our own homework, which we did, and in this case, started buying from them.”

According to state statute, illegal sales of more than 4 grams of opiate-based pain pills is considered trafficking and carries a minimum mandatory prison sentence.

Davenport said the drug unit purchased more than 100 pills from the couple, who both had prescriptions for the drug.

Rivers and Garrison were both charged with trafficking in opiates, possession with intent to sell and deliver Oxycodone a schedule II controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia and were confined at the Beaufort County Detention Center, each with a $10,000 secured bond.