Investigation of distribution of THC, high-grade pot leads to 5 arrests

Carl Keen II (top left), Michael Miller (top center), Desron Simpkins (top right), David Nathaniel Cotton (bottom left) and Lance Daveion Turner (bottom right) were arrested during the investigation. (Jail photos)
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BELL COUNTY, Texas (KWTX) An investigation into the importation and distribution of THC vape cartridges, THC-infused edibles and large quantities of high-grade marijuana in Central Texas led to five arrests and more are possible, the Bell County Sheriff’s Office announced Monday.

“The investigation revealed that individuals in the Killeen area were obtaining THC vapor cartridges in the Los Angles, Calif. area and shipping them to Bell County by common couriers,” the sheriff’s office said in a press release Monday.

“This investigation remains active and the suspects have been identified. Arrests are expected.”

Bell County Organized Crime Unit investigators seized more than 220 THC vape cartridges, more than 1,100 grams of THC concentrates and products, more than 7 ½ pounds of high-grade marijuana, a stolen firearm and about $4,700 in cash, the sheriff’s office said.

Carl Keen II, 34, of Copperas Cove, and Michael Miller, 34, of Austin, were arrested in August and were charged with possession of a controlled substance, THC, in an amount less than 400 grams, but more than 40 grams.

Neither man appeared on online jail rosters Monday.

During the investigation that led to their arrests, authorities seized 40 THC vape cartridges, a gram of THC liquid, 716 grams of marijuana and an unspecified amount of cash.

Authorities also arrested Lance Daveion Turner, 17, of Harker Heights and Nathaniel Cotton, 18, of Killeen in August.

They were charged with possession of a controlled substance, THC, in an amount more than 400 grams.

Cotton and Turner remained in the Bell County Jail Monday, where they’re held in lieu of $100,000 bonds on the drug charges.

Turner is held, as well, on a resisting arrest charge for which bond is set at $2,500, according to online records.

During the investigation that led to their arrests, authorities seized about 204 grams of marijuana, 1,021 grams of THC concentrate, a 9mm semi-automatic handgun, and a stolen .40 caliber semi-automatic handgun.

This month, authorities arrested Desron Simpkins, 27, of Copperas Cove.

He was charged with possession of marijuana in an amount less than 50 pounds, but more than 5 pounds.

He was also named in unrelated warrants including probation violations, authorities said.

He remains in the Bell County Jail on bonds totaling $39,000.

Authorities seized six pounds of high-grade marijuana and an unspecified amount of cash.