LEBANON (TN) – On Friday, April 30th, the Wilson County Sheriff’s Office Directed Patrol Unit made an arrest on Westview Drive in Lebanon stemming from an existing arrest warrant. Deputies made contact with the home owner at the residence and observed drug activity that led deputies in contacting the Wilson County Narcotics Division.
Through the information that was received, detectives were able to obtain a search warrant on the residence and located an ounce and a half of methamphetamine, a quarter ounce of crack cocaine, a quarter ounce of powder cocaine, THC edibles, two pounds of marijuana, and over $63,000.
“We are finding large amounts of drugs and money that are being used for trafficking almost on a weekly basis,” stated Wilson County Sheriff Robert Bryan. “These drugs that we are finding pose a high risk for addiction to those who are using it which causes a potential for overdose. We will continue to use every resource available to combat the drug trafficking within our community.”
Due to the ongoing investigation, the identity of the suspects will not be released at this time.
LEBANON (TN) – Last Friday evening, Directed Patrol Cpl. Logan Hackett initiated a traffic stop on a vehicle driving erratically southbound on Hartmann Drive in Lebanon. As soon as the vehicle pulled over on the shoulder and as Cpl. Hackett began to exit, the driver took off at a high rate of speed leading deputies on a pursuit that eventually ended as the car crashed into a telephone pole on Beckwith Road. Prior to crashing, Mt. Juliet Police were able to successfully spike out the tires from the fleeing vehicle. Upon arrival by deputies, witnesses stated they observed a male running with a black bag behind a residence.
Moments later, the driver was located in the back yard hiding from deputies under an old boat. Jeremy Sharif Bender, (33) of Mt. Juliet, was taken into custody and charged with multiple crimes. Deputies found a large amount of US currency totaling over $2,000 in Bender’s wallet as well as three separate bags of a tan powder substance believed to be heroin, two bags containing suboxone strips and a digital scale with powder residue on it that was located in the black bag.
Inside the vehicle, was a clear bag that contained multiple small blue pills believed to be pressed fentanyl, a glass pipe containing crystal methamphetamine and a half bottle of Crown Royal.
“Mr. Bender is a convicted felon who has a history of drug violations and evading law enforcement,” stated Wilson County Sheriff Robert Bryan. “Thankfully, no one was injured and we were able to take more dangerous drugs off the street before they got into someone else’s hands. Fentanyl is 50 to 100 times more potent than morphine and is claiming lives every day because of its high risk of addiction and dependency.”
Bender remains in jail with a total bond amount of $78,500 and charged with multiple drug offenses along with driving under the influence, implied consent, evading arrest x2, reckless endangerment, reckless driving and leaving the scene. He is set to appear in court on November 10, 2021, at 9 a.m.
LEBANON, TN – The Wilson County Sheriff’s Office will be hosting a Drug Take Back Initiative on Saturday, April 24, for anyone wanting to dispose of unwanted and/or expired prescription and non-prescription drugs. The event will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at two drop-off locations:
Gibbs Pharmacy- 1427 W Baddour Parkway Unit B, Lebanon
Three Forks Marketplace, 9000 Sparta Pike, Watertown
The National Prescription Drug Take Back Day addresses a crucial public safety and public health issue. According to the 2019 National Survey on Drug Use and Health, 9.7 million people misused prescription pain relievers, 4.9 million people misused prescription stimulants, and 5.9 million people misused prescription tranquilizers or sedatives in 2019. The survey also showed that a majority of misused prescription drugs were obtained from family and friends, often from the home medicine cabinet.
“We strongly encourage you to take this opportunity to clean out your medicine cabinets and get rid of expired or medication you are no longer taking,” Sheriff Robert Bryan said. “Your home medicine cabinet is often where young people begin experimenting with drugs. It’s important to recognize this could happen to someone in your home, including your child, your grandchild or your neighbor’s child. Please take precautions to avoid a tragedy involving your prescription drugs.”
Medications you use for legitimate reasons are often subject to theft, and can lead to addiction and ultimately even drug trafficking. Sheriff Bryan noted that there is a national epidemic of prescription drug abuse that is often the motive in numerous crimes. “We appreciate cooperative efforts such as this one,” Sheriff Bryan said, noting, “We are happy to be able to provide a place where you safely and conveniently dispose of such medicines when they are no longer needed or wanted.”
Anyone who would like to drop off medication or drugs, prescription or other, can drop it off at the event on Saturday, April 24, with no questions asked. No syringes are accepted, whether used or new. And no inhalers will be accepted. Thank you for your cooperation.
OLD HICKORY (TN)- Deputies were dispatched to a residence in Old Hickory on March 31st around 9 p.m. after 911 received a call of shots fired in the area. Upon arrival near the 600 block of General Kershaw Drive, deputies quickly made contact with a male subject who had been shot in the left knee and right leg. The victim was unable to advise if the suspect(s) had left the residence or was still in the immediate area. Cpl. Bryce Beaty immediately applied a tourniquet to the victim’s left leg until medics arrived.
Through the course of the investigation by WCSO detectives, information was developed that presence of drugs were inside the home that the deputies responded to. Detectives worked quickly to get a search warrant issued for the residence. The warrant was executed where a large amount of narcotics and weapons were located. One of the weapons seized was originally stolen from a vehicle burglary out of Lewisburg, TN.
“During the course of the investigation through the interviews that were conducted by detectives, this incident appears to be drug related,” stated Wilson County Sheriff Robert Bryan. “There were large amounts of illegal drugs inside the home that included crystal methamphetamine, crack cocaine, powder cocaine, various pills and marijuana. Numerous weapons were also found inside the residence as well as items commonly associated with drug trade.”
Detectives will be consulting with the District Attorney’s Office with their findings from the investigation for prosecution of the incident that occurred.
LEBANON, TN – A local man who was accused of threatening multiple public servants and private citizens throughout the middle Tennessee area plead guilty this morning in criminal court. Multiple agencies worked collaboratively in executing search warrants on a property located at Young Road last February as a result of a lengthy investigation on Phillip Wayne Foster.
“The letters included threats of bodily injury and/or death, bomb threats and threats of distribution or delivery of chemical agents,” stated Wilson County Sheriff Robert Bryan. “This was a lengthy investigation for our Criminal Investigations Division, led by Detective Mike Barbee, due to the numerous victims and jurisdictions that were involved. They conducted a very thorough investigation which allowed them to build a strong case against Foster in court.”
Foster plead guilty to eight charges this morning in criminal court for his involvement with sending threatening letters to numerous victims that included multiple elected officials, including numerous judges that are currently or have historically served the State of Tennessee.
Deputies responded to the southeast part of Wilson County to investigate a residential burglary. Fortunately, the homeowner had installed video surveillance cameras at his residence which captured the entire burglary.
“This incident is a perfect example of how homeowners can help us capture individuals that commit these types of crimes,” stated Sheriff Robert Bryan. “This gives our detectives a great advantage during these investigations and will help our agency tremendously during prosecution.”
If you know this individual or recognize this vehicle, please call the Wilson County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigations Division at 615-444-1459. Detectives need your help, and anyone with information related to this incident or any crime can remain anonymous.
Human trafficking involves the use of force, fraud, or coercion to obtain some type of labor or commercial sex act. Every year, millions of men, women, and children are trafficked worldwide- including right here in Tennessee. It can happen in any community and victims can be any age, race, gender, or nationality. Traffickers might use violence, manipulation, or false promises of well-paying jobs or romantic relationships to lure victims into trafficking situations.
Language barriers, fear of their traffickers, and/or fear of law enforcement frequently keep victims from seeking help, making human trafficking a hidden crime. Traffickers look for people who are susceptible for a variety of reasons, including psychological or emotional vulnerability, economic hardship, lack of social safety net, natural disasters, or political instability. The trauma caused by the traffickers can be so great that many may not identify themselves as victims or ask for help, even in highly public settings.
Recognizing key indicators of human trafficking is the first step in identifying victims and can help save a life. Not all indicators listed are present in every human trafficking situation, and the presence or absence of any of the indicators is not necessarily proof of human trafficking.
The safety of the public as well as the victim is paramount. Do not attempt to confront a suspected trafficker directly or alert a victim to any suspicions. It is up to law enforcement to investigate suspected cases of human trafficking.
A fundraiser that began in the fall of 2019 but was halted by the March tornado outbreak and COVID-19 has finally come to a completion for School Resource Officers. Critical incidents are something we hope we never have to experience in a school setting, but preparedness in the event that a critical incident could occur is vital to saving lives. Wilson Central and Lebanon High have joined a list of schools throughout Wilson County after School Resource Officers raised enough money through numerous donations from parents, citizens, school clubs and local businesses to fund their original goal of placing a bleeding control kit in every classroom as well as high trafficked areas such as gyms and sports facilities.
Stop The Bleed kits are a resource for schools to use in a bleeding emergency before professional help arrives. Health officials say one of the most common contributing factors in trauma-related events is preventable blood loss. The items in these kits help control the loss of blood, leading to better outcomes for those who are injured. SROs Robert Locke (WCHS) and Dusty Burton (LHS) are two that LHS SRO Cpl. Matt McPeak gave a lot of credit to for their assistance in seeking donations. “After we came back for the beginning of this school year, we began fundraising again and thanks to the enormous help from SRO Burton and WCHS SRO Locke (who was instrumental in raising money for Wilson Central), we were able to fund our original goal to place a kit in every classroom among other areas of LHS”, McPeak said. “I cannot possibly mention everyone but I want to express just how thankful we are for the support and donations from these businesses and this community.”
As deer season continues, there have been numerous vehicle related accidents involving collisions with deer across our area. Although many times they are unavoidable, here are some tips to keep in mind as you travel the roadways.
Buckle up! Seat belts are designed to protect you from a collision or sudden stop — which is exactly what happens when you’re faced with a deer on the highway. The easiest way to help you and your family safe is by buckling up.
Be observant. Deer crossings are there for a reason — to warn you that the area you’re driving in is heavily populated with deer or common areas deer cross. Be on the lookout and take extra caution when you see these signs. And remember that deer often travel in groups, so where you only see one, chances are there are more around.
Recruit your passengers. The more people watching for deer, the better. Tell your passengers to be on the lookout and warn you if they see any deer. Even if they see deer grazing in fields far from the road, this could potentially mean more deer are around and trying to cross over.
Signs of the sun — Dawn and dusk are times deer are most active because it’s when they are commonly on the hunt for food. This is also the time of day when visibility is much lower and your vision isn’t at its best.
Prep your horn — Deer often fixate on headlights, so it may not be effective enough to just flash your lights. Since they’re easy to spook, brake firmly and honk your horn.
Don’t swerve — If it’s apparent that a crash is unavoidable, whether it is a deer or other animal crossing the road, do not swerve. Studies show that more serious crashes occur when drivers swerve to avoid an animal. Swerving could cause you to lose control of your vehicle and possibly roll over or hit another car or object.
As COVID-19 cases begin to rise once again, we want to encourage everyone to do their part in keeping our community safe by practicing measures to slow the spread of the virus, such as: frequent hand washing, social distancing, wearing a mask, staying home when feeling sick and getting a COVID-19 test. On Saturday, November 7th, 137 positive COVID-19 tests were reported. This has been the highest number of cases in Wilson County in a single day so far.
There are many people that are at a high risk because of underlying health issues and we encourage each of you to make the right choice; as we have also encouraged all deputies and staff to do the same. By practicing these measures in an effort to slow down the spread of COVID-19, we remain fully committed to serving our citizens by ensuring proper steps are taken for the safety and well-being of Wilson County.