The Fight Against Fentanyl: Two Arrests Highlight the Struggle Against Deadly Opioids in Dougherty County

May 19, 2023
1 min read
The Fight Against Fentanyl: Two Arrests Highlight the Struggle Against Deadly Opioids in Dougherty County

The Gist: A significant drug trafficking operation in Dougherty County came to a halt this Tuesday. DEA agents arrested Larry Sparks, an Albany resident, and Clint Harrell of Sylvester.

What Happened?: A joint investigation into Sparks, 45, led to his arrest on suspicion of distributing methamphetamine and fentanyl. Harrell, 61, was arrested at the scene for possessing heroin. The probe was set into motion following a series of fentanyl-related overdose fatalities in the region.

Investigators say they believed that Sparks was disseminating a substantial amount of drugs at several spots in Dougherty County, including his home at 1501 Pinecrest Drive, Albany.

The Search: According to the GBI, the search at Pinecrest Drive revealed a notable stash of drugs: over three kilograms of methamphetamine, more than a kilogram of fentanyl, and seven firearms. Harrell was present during the search and found with heroin.

Post-arrest, Harrell was escorted to Dougherty County Jail, while Sparks was taken to Lee County Jail.

What’s Next?: As the investigation presses on, concerted efforts are being made by law enforcement agencies to curb the spread of street-level drug trade in Albany. Their objective: a safer Albany for its residents.

The investigation reflects the power of collective effort among multiple agencies. The public is urged to contribute by reporting any drug-related activities. Anonymous tips can be submitted via a dedicated tip line, online, or through a mobile app called “See Something, Send Something.”

Fentanyl Deaths in Georgia:

  • Fentanyl-related overdose deaths in Georgia have been increasing since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Between May 1, 2020, and April 30, 2021, fentanyl-involved overdose deaths increased by 106.2% compared to the same time period the previous year​.
  • From 2019 to 2021, fentanyl-involved overdose deaths in Georgia increased by 230%​.
  • In total, Georgia experiences 1,408 overdose deaths per year.
  • 1.65% of all deaths in Georgia are from drug overdose.
  • The state’s overdose death rate is 13.1 deaths out of every 100,000 residents​.

⚠️ Reminder: Crime articles contain only charges and information from police reports and law enforcement statements. Suspects and defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

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