Lexington police successfully took down a large drug operation in Swansea, confiscating cocaine, cash, and seized eight firearms during the arrest.
It began as an investigation by Animal Services being conducted concerning the condition and treatment of dogs at a home at 505 Swansea Road in Swansea. Lexington County Deputies went along to assist in the search warrent and in the process noticed a small digital scale with a white powder that appeared to be cocaine. Deputies then requested assistance from NET (Lexington County Multi-Agency Narcotics Enforcement Team) officers to investigate illegal drugs at the home.
When those officers arrived with a search warrent, they discovered about 300 grams of cocaine with a street value of about $30,000, $25,028 in cash, a small amount of crack, guns, ammunition, surveillance cameras, packing materials and an electronic mouney counter. The eight firearms that were seized included one Fire Storm 9-mm handgun, one 140 Pro Taurus .40-caliber handgun, one Ruger .38-caliber handgun, one Glock .357-caliber handgun, one New England 12-gauge shotgun, one Savage 30-06 bolt-action rifle, one Mossberg semi-automatic .22-caliber rifle and one Marlin 30-30 lever-action rifle.
Authorities arrested 34 year old Rashawn Stafford and his live-in girlfriend, 27 year old Tyvona Toland on charges of trafficking in cocaine, possessing crack cocaine, possessing a weapon during the commission of a violent crime and possessing a firearm that had been reported stolen. Gatson and Toland each were being held on Wednesday, January 15 at the Lexington County Detention Center on bail totaling $200,000.
Metts asked anyone with information about illegal drug activity in Lexington County to call CrimeStoppers at 1-888-CRIME-SC. Citizens also can provide information anonymously by accessing the Crime Tip link on the Sheriffâ??s Department web site www.lexingtonsheriff.com.