Sheriff’s Dept. Makes Arrests For Drugs, Stealing

During the past month, the Douglas County Sheriff’s Department has made numerous arrests on charges including drugs and stealing.

On Wednesday, Feb. 10, Christopher Engelhardt, 33, was arrested as a result of an investigation by Sgt. Vernon Johnson regarding stealing of propane tanks.

Several tips were received by the sheriff’s department regarding Engelhardt selling several items on Facebook, two of which were 500 gallon propane tanks.

A warrant was obtained for failure to obey judge’s order from a previous warrant for burglary and the new theft/stealing charge.  Engelhardt was arrested at his residence on Feb. 10, along with Tiffany Engelhardt who was also arrested on another warrant for failing to obey a judge’s order which has no bond pending hearing.

Bond for Christopher Engelhardt was set at $20,000.

On Thursday, Feb. 11, an arrest was made as a result of a check on suspicious activity at Gentry Roadside Park on North 5 Highway made on Jan. 30 by Deputy Gabe Stroud.

During that check, Michael Moore, 62, was approached while in his vehicle with a very strong smell of marijuana coming from it.  Moore admitted to smoking marijuana and handed Deputy Stroud a burnt marijuana cigarette.

A search of Moore’s vehicle revealed over 100 grams of marijuana, baggies with a white substance that field tested positive for methamphetamine, and additional marijuana and a marijuana pipe. Moore was arrested on Feb. 11 and posted $15,000 bond with a bondsman.

Late on Monday, Feb. 15, a search warrant was served at a residence in northern Douglas County based on information that there was methamphetamine in a residence. As a result of the search warrant, methamphetamine was discovered.

Two subjects were arrested. Della Lansdown, 29, was cited for possession of marijuana and released, and Joseph Bell, 36, was arrested on a 24-hour investigational hold while a warrant was obtained.

On Tuesday, Feb. 16, a warrant was issued for Bell for possession of a controlled substance (methamphetamine) felony Class C, and misdemeanor unlawful use of drug paraphernalia with a $20,000, 10% cash or surety bond which he posted later that day.

On Tuesday, Feb. 16, the Douglas County Sheriff’s Department received a tip from an individual that stated there was a subject with a felony warrant and stolen vehicles at a residence near the Douglas/Webster County line.

Deputy Chris Page and Deputy Gabe Stroud attempted to make contact with an individual regarding an outstanding warrant in the Northwood Subdivision located before Z Highway near the Webster County line.

Upon arriving at the residence in plain sight was an older Mercedes car and an older RV. The 1973 Mercedes Benz passenger vehicle, showed registration out of Seymour; however, when the vehicle was run by its VIN it showed being entered as a stolen vehicle out of Dade County.

Also found at this residence was an RV that was also reported as stolen out of Dade County.  Attempts were made to contact subjects inside the residence who would not answer.  At that time entrance was made into the residence where Shawn Lowe-Dillard, 49, was found hiding in a closet.

Lowe-Dillard had an active warrant out of Dade County for four felony Class C counts of stealing a motor vehicle with nationwide extradition with a $5,000 cash only bond, and was extradited by Dade County on Wednesday, Feb. 17.

Also on Tuesday, Feb. 16, Deputy Stroud made a traffic stop on CR 403. Deputy Stroud and K9 Yadi performed an open air search around the vehicle and Yadi indicated a positive hit. During the search of the vehicle a pink backpack was located in the back of the vehicle containing a syringe, spoon, and glass smoking pipe commonly used in the consumption of methamphetamine.

All items field tested positive for meth.   Deputy Stroud then arrested  the female, Jessica Fardo-Puchta, 33, of Ava.

Fardo-Puchta was transported to the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office where she was booked and held on a 24-hour investigational hold. A warrant was obtained  for Fardo-Puchta on Wednesday, Feb. 17, for Class C felony possession of controlled substance (meth), misdemeanor Class A possession of marijuana, and misdemeanor Class A unlawful use of drug paraphernalia with a $15,000, 10% cash or surety bond and is currently detained in the Douglas County Jail.

On Wednesday, Feb. 17, Deputy Taylor Wallace made a traffic stop near Country Club Estates with a vehicle.  Inside the vehicle scales and spoons used in the distribution of use of methamphetamine were seized.

Billie Bea, 25, and Ryan Swearengin, 25, were arrested and brought to the Douglas County Sheriff’s Department for booking.  While processing the individuals it was discovered that both subjects were hiding methamphetamine and hydrocodone pills inside their lower body cavities.

The next morning information was taken to the Douglas County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office and warrants were issued for both subjects.

Both were booked on various drug charges, including attempting to distribute in the county jail.

Bond for Bea was set at $20,000 and Swearengin’s bond was set at $15,000, both cash only.