I-Team: I-55 drug busts - WSFA.com Montgomery Alabama news.

I-Team: I-55 drug busts

Trooper Shane Stewart was shot in August 2012 on Interstate 55 during a traffic stop. Trooper Shane Stewart was shot in August 2012 on Interstate 55 during a traffic stop.
In southeast Missouri, two dedicated troopers work to stop those deliveries in their tracks. In southeast Missouri, two dedicated troopers work to stop those deliveries in their tracks.
On this day, it's roughly five pounds of crystal meth. In five years together, Corporal Crank and his partner, Corporal Shane Stewart, work the Interstate 55 corridor that runs from the I-57 interchange to the Arkansas state line. On this day, it's roughly five pounds of crystal meth. In five years together, Corporal Crank and his partner, Corporal Shane Stewart, work the Interstate 55 corridor that runs from the I-57 interchange to the Arkansas state line.
There is a third member to this drug interdiction team. Five-year-old German Shepard Edy has helped make some major busts, including 50 pounds of cocaine. There is a third member to this drug interdiction team. Five-year-old German Shepard Edy has helped make some major busts, including 50 pounds of cocaine.
NEW MADRID COUNTY, MO (KFVS) -

Before marijuana, cocaine or heroin makes it to the streets of any Heartland city, drug couriers or mules drive those deliveries, often cross country.

In southeast Missouri, two dedicated troopers work to stop those deliveries in their tracks.

"737 Poplar Bluff," Corporal David Crank called into his radio just moments after searching an Ohio couple's trunk following a traffic stop back in August 2012.

"Get on the ground," he commanded the pair. "On the ground!" Then back to his radio. "I need some assistance. I've got a seizure."

On this day, it's roughly five pounds of crystal meth. In five years together, Corporal Crank and his partner, Corporal Shane Stewart, work the Interstate 55 corridor that runs from the I-57 interchange to the Arkansas state line. They seized $2 million in drugs and a half million in cash last year alone.

"It was three college students," Stewart recalled as he looked at a picture taken from a past bust. "They were coming from Austin and they were taking 100 pounds of marijuana and a little bit of cocaine up to Ohio."

While some of the interdiction work done on I-55 is easy to see, some of it isn't. And while Corporals Crank and Stewart don't plan on revealing all of their secrets, they do say that they watch for unusual driving patterns and once they get a vehicle pulled over, hearing about trips that simply don't make sense.

Stewart recalled a driver traveling from Indiana to South Texas, claiming he needed to visit a dying relative.

"Looking at his trip, some paperwork in his car, he only spent 30 minutes in South Texas. And if the trip was that important and someone was terminally ill like that, you're going to spend more time than just 30 minutes."

"Are these drugs that are actually going to end up here, or are they simply passing through," we asked Stewart.

"Eventually, they'll end up here," he replied. "Most of the stuff we get on 55 is going up to Chicago or St. Louis or Indianapolis or a major city. But that trickles down to Sikeston, trickles down to Charleston, southern Illinois, Kentucky."

There is a third member to this drug interdiction team. Five-year-old German Shepard Edy has helped make some major busts, including 50 pounds of cocaine seized after Crank pulled over a woman traveling with a small child from Dallas to Chicago.

"And the thing about this stop, is her child was sitting on the trap where the cocaine was," Crank recalled.

While the August 2012 bust went smoothly, they don't all do. Just five months earlier, Crank called Stewart for backup after the passenger in the car he just pulled over had a look on his face the trooper won't soon forget.

"Shane got there," Crank recalled. "I informed him what I saw. We re-approached the vehicle. Shane opened the driver's door and the front seat passenger shot him."

"And I can remember it," Stewart said. "And the reason it stands out is just because it was at night. I leaned in the vehicle just a little bit. And so when I did, you could see the muzzle flash."

Both troopers say they learned from that near-fatal night, but even that risk won't keep them from continuing the fight to clear these roads of illegal drugs before they arrive in your hometown.

"You know, some people who use drugs they get a rush from doing drugs," Stewart said. "Whenever you stop a car and you get a large load of marijuana, cocaine, heroin, whatever it is, we get a rush."

Copyright KFVS 2014. All rights reserved.

  • NewsMore>>

  • Pope Francis to create 14 new cardinals in June

    Pope Francis to create 14 new cardinals in June

    Sunday, May 20 2018 6:41 AM EDT2018-05-20 10:41:19 GMT
    Sunday, May 20 2018 9:42 AM EDT2018-05-20 13:42:57 GMT
    (AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia). Pope Francis asperges holy water as he celebrates a Pentecost mass in St. Peter's Basilica, at the Vatican, Sunday, May 20, 2018.(AP Photo/Gregorio Borgia). Pope Francis asperges holy water as he celebrates a Pentecost mass in St. Peter's Basilica, at the Vatican, Sunday, May 20, 2018.

    Pope Francis has announced that he will make 14 new cardinals next month, among them his chief aide for helping homeless people.

    More >>

    Pope Francis has announced that he will make 14 new cardinals next month, among them his chief aide for helping homeless people.

    More >>
  • Texas school gunman: 'I'm going to kill you.' Then he fired

    Texas school gunman: 'I'm going to kill you.' Then he fired

    Saturday, May 19 2018 11:51 PM EDT2018-05-20 03:51:30 GMT
    Sunday, May 20 2018 9:42 AM EDT2018-05-20 13:42:32 GMT
    (Jennifer Reynolds/The Galveston County Daily News via AP). April Salinas, second from right, her daughters Meah, 13, and Macee, 6, and Jeramiah Kelley read notes left at memorial behind Texas First Bank, Saturday, May 19, 2018 in Santa Fe, Texas. A gu...(Jennifer Reynolds/The Galveston County Daily News via AP). April Salinas, second from right, her daughters Meah, 13, and Macee, 6, and Jeramiah Kelley read notes left at memorial behind Texas First Bank, Saturday, May 19, 2018 in Santa Fe, Texas. A gu...

    The mother of one slain student said her daughter may have been targeted because she rejected advances from the suspect, who was an ex-boyfriend of her daughter's best friend.

    More >>

    The mother of one slain student said her daughter may have been targeted because she rejected advances from the suspect, who was an ex-boyfriend of her daughter's best friend.

    More >>
  • Justify wins foggy Preakness, keeps Triple Crown bid alive

    Justify wins foggy Preakness, keeps Triple Crown bid alive

    Saturday, May 19 2018 4:10 AM EDT2018-05-19 08:10:38 GMT
    Sunday, May 20 2018 9:32 AM EDT2018-05-20 13:32:23 GMT
    (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky). Kentucky Derby winner Justify is washed outside a barn, Friday, May 18, 2018, at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore. The Preakness Stakes horse race is schedule for Saturday.(AP Photo/Patrick Semansky). Kentucky Derby winner Justify is washed outside a barn, Friday, May 18, 2018, at Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore. The Preakness Stakes horse race is schedule for Saturday.

    Baffert chasing history, Justify pursues Triple Crown in potentially soggy Preakness.

    More >>

    Baffert chasing history, Justify pursues Triple Crown in potentially soggy Preakness.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly