Drug burn at city landfill

At left, Lt. Jeramye Whitaker, head of the Paris Police Department’s Criminal Investigation Division, dumps a container of drug case evidence into the bucket of a waiting bulldozer during an evidence destruction on April 30 at the Paris-Henry County Landfill. In the right photo taken a few moments later, the bulldozer dumps the load onto a pile of evidence already aflame. Drugs representing hundreds of cases were destroyed, including marijuana, methamphetamine, cocaine and heroin.

Hundreds of pounds of illegal street drugs and paraphernalia went up in flames recently at the Paris-Henry County Landfill.

On April 30, the Paris Police Department destroyed evidence from adjudicated and resolved cases from 2015-19.

Lt. Jeramye Whitaker, head of the department’s Criminal Investigation Division, supervised the destruction, which represented hundreds of cases worked by the PPD and the Metro Crime Unit.

“This is the biggest destruction we’ve done in a long time,” Whitaker said. Drugs set aflame — which took up two full bulldozer loads —included methamphetamine, cocaine, crack cocaine, marijuana, ecstasy, heroin and drug paraphernalia.

“The best part of this is the drugs will never wind up on the street, and will stay out of the hands of users and kids.”

On hand to witness the destruction were Paris Police Chief Ricky Watson, CID Sgt. Jeff Smith and Asst. District Attorney Rebecca Griffey.

Whitaker said the department planned to keep up its efforts to keep illegal drugs out of Henry County.

“We’ll continue to have a proactive approach, seeking out drugs and drug dealers, and prosecuting them to the fullest extent of the law,” he said.

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