Union Sheriff’s Department seizes $65,000 in codeine cough syrup, $9,000 cash

K-9 Caesar and Deputy Chris Whiteside with the seized drugs and cash
May 19th, 2021     Featured News General News

The Union County Sheriff’s Department seized approximately $65,000 worth of codeine early Wednesday, plus nearly $9,000 in cash.

Sheriff Jimmy Edwards said deputies pulled a 2013 Cadillac over on I-22 west bound near the Myrtle exit about 3:30 a.m. He said deputies noticed the car was driving recklessly and weaving some.

In the vehicle were Scotty George, 35, and William Douglas, 28, both of Memphis.

When deputies asked to search the car, they refused that so K-9 officer Caesar was brought in. Edwards said the dog turned up a misdemeanor amount of marijuana in the vehicle but the major hit was on the trunk.

“In the trunk they had nine cases with 12 one-pint bottles of codeine solution each and one case containing 20 one-pint bottles,” he said. “Codeine is a Schedule V narcotic and it’s pretty popular nowadays to drink, smoke with or mix with.”

Mixing codeine cough syrup with drinks such as Sprite and sometimes hard candy like Jolly Ranchers is popular, especially in urban areas, and is known as “slurpin’,” “sippin’” or “sizzurp.”

Codeine is typically used as a cough suppressant while promethazine can be sold under the brand name of Phenergan, used for cold, allergy and other antihistamine-sensitive symptoms.

Edwards said the cough syrup form can sell on the street for from $250 to $600 a pint.

Edwards said he believes the two picked up the codeine in Atlanta and were returning to Memphis.

Officers also seized $8,995 in cash from the two suspects.

Edwards said due to the large amount of codeine, the two are being charged with drug trafficking. No bond had been set at midday Wednesday but Edwards added the two have criminal histories including a variety of charges.

Edwards praised the work of K-9 Caesar and his handler, deputy Chris Whiteside. “We’ve only had him (Caesar) about nine months and he has already made several felony arrests,” Edwards said. “He works a regular shift and is more than paying for himself.”

 

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