The Canadian County Sheriff's Office made a major drug bust along I-40 early Friday morning. One of their top K9s found bundles of pot in an unlikely place.
Each one of the bags weighed between a half pound to two pounds, and Canadian County Undersheriff Chris West said they were all found hidden under a bed, and inside a storage compartment in a motor home the deputy pulled over. They seized more than 30 pounds of the high grade marijuana.
“They just throw dope in a plastic bag or duffel bag and they throw it in the vehicle,” said West. “And sometimes they try to use more sophisticated means where they do the vacuum sealing.
West said Leslie Shevon Ray, 30, of Dalsell, South Carolina, was traveling east on I-40 when she reached for her phone and ran over a cone.
He said the deputy patrolling the highway near a construction zone became suspicious that Ray may be involved in criminal activity when the story she was giving about buying the motor home in Texas turned out to be false. Turns out she's a convicted felon, who has been caught dealing drugs before.
West said this is one of three drug busts they've made along Interstate 40 in just the past 30 days. And it is all thanks to the keen nose of one of their top deputies – A K9 named Pickles.
West said Pickles and his handler have made dozens of drug busts during their outings in the past six months alone.
“His hits include marijuana, cocaine and even methamphetamine,” said West. “So he's an awesome dog!”
The pot recovered in Friday morning's bust was all hidden in vacuum sealed bags to try to cover up the smell, but deputies said they've seen drug dealers use lots of different things to try to throw off the scent.
“Sometimes they'll pack it in duct tape plus the vacuum seal, sometimes they'll use mustard - all kinds of different things to disguise the odor,” said West. “But the dogs can defeat all of it.”
And for this Canadian County K9 and his handler, it's all just part of the job.
And it usually makes for an open and shut case.
West said the pot recovered was the hydroponic kind and they believe it was coming from California. It has a street value of more than $100,000. It will be kept in their evidence area under lock and key during the legal process, but West said after that it will be destroyed.
Ray is being held in the Canadian County jail on $210,000 bond.