PRATTVILLE, AL (WSFA) - Concerned neighbors helped expose a suspected drug house in a Prattville neighborhood, according to narcotics investigators. Tips from residents sparked the investigation and police ended up seizing meth and guns. They also arrested two people authorities believe were behind the operation.
Sergeant Sean Malloy, the commander of the Prattville Police Department's Narcotics Unit, says a couple was dealing meth out of their house in the Camellia Estates neighborhood, and they had heavy duty firepower and surveillance in place to protect their business.
"This methamphetamine, ice, is what they refer to as crystal or meth ice, and these bags here are gram-sized bags that are used to divide up the methamphetamine and sell them by the gram, on average anywhere from $80-100," Sgt. Malloy stated as he displayed the evidence from the bust.
Guns, drugs, and camera equipment were found in the suspects' home on Cherry Drive.
The investigation was sparked by numerous citizen complaints about possible drug activity at the residence and it spanned several weeks until police got enough probable cause to execute a search warrant last week.
"This stemmed from information we received that someone at this particular address on Cherry Drive was selling illegal narcotics," Malloy said. "Once we started the investigation, we were able to quickly develop enough evidence to confirm the possible drug dealing."
Police indicated that drugs were sold out of the home for at least two months.
"We can prove that methamphetamine was being sold from that residence. The person responsible for selling the methamphetamine is a convicted felon and had firearms present during the distribution of the methamphetamine. At times, the traffic could be heavy as far as the distribution of the meth," Malloy explained.
In Alabama, convicted felons are not allowed to be in possession of firearms. One of the guns also had a homemade suppressor, according to narcotics officials.
The couple at the center of the investigation, William Kyle Richards and Kacie Brown, were arrested. Richards was identified as the convicted felon. They've been charged with possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine.
The suspects' surveillance system made the drug bust more dangerous for officers. Cameras on the outside of the house were hooked up to a live feed on a monitor in the living room.
"We know that they could see on the outside so there was no sneaking up on them or the element of surprise when we went to execute the warrant," Sgt. Malloy said. "We know they know we're coming."
The raid went down in predawn hours without any issues. The Tactical Team assisted in the drug bust. Richards and Brown were sleeping when officers arrived.
"This is an AR 15. This particular rifle is the one that was found next to the suspect in the living room while he was asleep on the sofa once we made entry," Malloy stated. "When we heard that firearms were involved and present, we wanted to act as quickly as possible so that we could eliminate the danger, not only to other law enforcement but to the community."
A .25 caliber handgun was also found in the home.
"It was hidden in a motorcycle that one of the suspects rode to deliver and sell his methamphetamine," the sergeant revealed.
Police commended those in the community who voiced their concerns about what they thought was happening at the couple's home.
"This entire case started with concerned citizens calling about one particular residence. If they see anything similar, please report it. We are very proactive," Malloy added. "Methamphetamine is a problem- not the actual making or manufacturing of it, but the distribution and the use of it is still a problem in our area."
William Kyle Richards was acquitted of murder in January by a Montgomery County jury in the 2013 death of his uncle.
The body of Thomas Bracknell was found inside a story shed at his house on McCarter Avenue in Montgomery.
Police say he was wrapped in bed sheets and appeared to have blunt force trauma to his head and body.
According to authorities, a family dispute led to the killing.
His nephews- William Kyle Richards, Brandon Bracknell and Mitchell Bracknell- were all charged in the case.
Richards was acquitted. Brandon and Mitchell Bracknell pleaded guilty to murder.