*Avery County Sheriff's Office press release*
On the morning of June 23rd the Avery County Sheriff’s Office received information about possible manufacturing of methamphetamine on Banner Elk Hwy. Officers of the Avery County Sheriff’s Office assisted by an Officer of the Newland Police Department responded to the area and located Johnny Hughes age 52 and Patricia Clark age 39 of Banner Elk Hwy.
Officers searched the residence and located evidence of a Methamphetamine lab. Hughes and Clark were both charged with three felony drug chargers including manufacturing methamphetamine, possession of precursor chemicals and possession of Methamphetamine. Hughes and Clark were both arrested and placed in the Avery County Jail under bond of $15,000.00 each.
Later on in the morning hours of the June 23rd the Avery County Sheriff’s Office received information about a methamphetamine lab on Shug Lane in Elk Park. Officers of Avery County Sheriff’s Office responded to the report to investigate. While at the location investigating the report 25 year old James Cook drove up to their location.
Officers noticed a strong odor of alcohol about Mr. Cook and other indicators of impairment. Cook was arrested for DWI and during a search of Mr. Cook Officers located prescription drugs illegally possessed by Mr. Cook. Mr. Cook was charged with DWI and Aggravated Possession of a Controlled Substance. Cook was placed in the Avery County Jail under an $11,000.00 bond.
On June 24th the Avery County Sheriff’s Office received information on the theft of a wallet containing the victim’s identification card and financial transaction cards. Later investigators received information that 48 year old Lori Hughes of Mollies Branch Rd was attempting to rent a car in Boone using the victim’s identification and financial transaction cards.
Officers with the Boone Police Department responded to a business on Hwy 105 and located Ms. Hughes where she was attempting to use the victim’s identification and financial transaction cards. Officers with the Boone Police Department charged Ms. Hughes with one felony count of attempting to Obtain Property by False Pretenses. Investigators with the Avery Sheriff’s Office also charged Ms. Hughes with Obtaining Property by False Pretenses.
Hughes received a $4,000.00 bond at the Watauga County Jail based on the two charges. Investigators with the Avery County Sheriff’s Office have numerous reports of the victim’s financial transaction cards being used in Avery County. Several other felony charges are anticipated by Investigators with the Sheriff’s Office.