The Morgan County Sheriff's Office is searching for a man accused of manufacturing and possessing meth, trafficking heroin and possessing several types of commonly-abused prescription medication.
James Sharpe from Somerville is wanted for the charges of manufacturing a controlled substance first-degree, trafficking in heroin and several counts of unlawful possession of a controlled substance. The sheriff's office says the total bond amount is more than $200,000.
Mike Swafford, the public information officer for the sheriff's office, says agents began investigating on June 18th after searching Sharpe's home in the 1200-block of Morrow Mountain Road. He says a search warrant was obtained after agents learned of drug activity likely happening at the home.
During the search, Swafford says agents found components associated with the manufacturing process of methamphetamine. These include pseudoephedrine, iodine crystals, hydrogen peroxide, acetone, lye and a makeshift generator used in the iodine crystallization phase of the process, he says.
According to Swafford, this type of clandestine methamphetamine lab, known as “Red P (phosphorus),” is extremely dangerous because of deadly fumes emitted from the iodine.
Swafford says agents also found methamphetamine at the home and approximately 14 grams of heroin. He says in Alabama, four grams is the threshold that has to be met for someone to be charged with trafficking in heroin.
He says it's been discovered recently that heroin is being “cut” with fentanyl to increase profit margin.
"Fentanyl, a highly-potent opiate pain killer, can be extremely dangerous to anyone who comes into contact with the substance," Swafford said in a statement released on Wednesday.
He says it only takes two to three salt-sized granules of fentanyl to be deadly. It's unknown if the substance recovered was laced with fentanyl, and it is being tested at the Alabama Department of Forensic Sciences.
Swafford says agents also found numerous types of commonly-abused medication while searching the home, including Xanex, Adderall, OxyContin and Klonopin. Guns, drug scales, baggies, syringes and methamphetamine pipes were also found, he says.
If you know the whereabouts of Sharpe, the sheriff's office asks you to call 256-301-1174. If you wish to report suspicious drug activity, call 256-351-4800.