Moonshine operation shut down in Bullock County

The Pike County and Bullock County Sheriff’s Offices report they have shut down a moonshine operation. (Source: WSFA)
Published: Jul. 6, 2022 at 7:21 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 6, 2022 at 10:15 PM CDT
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BULLOCK COUNTY, Ala. (WSFA) - A moonshine still in Bullock County is now out of business. Authorities uncovered and shut down the illegal operation Wednesday.

“We’ve cost them a lot of money here today,” said Pike County Sheriff Russell Thomas.

30 barrels of mash and a vat full of distilled moonshine were found and destroyed by the Pike County and Bullock County Sheriff’s Offices.

“If you don’t destroy it, they’ll reuse it,” Thomas said.

The still was found about two miles down a dirt road off County Road 37, which is just off Highway 231. The still was found in Bullock County, but the road that led to it was in Pike County, which is why both offices are involved.

Deputies destroyed about $5,000 worth of material being used to run the operation. It’s estimated the still was able to generate about 600 gallons of moonshine per batch, bringing in about $5,000 worth of moonshine a week.

Officials say the property owner likely had no idea the still was on their land. Investigators are still working to find those who were running the operation.

#BREAKING The Pike County and Bullock County Sheriff’s Departments have uncovered and destroyed 30 barrels of moonshine...

Posted by Ashley Bowerman WSFA on Wednesday, July 6, 2022

Bullock County Sheriff Raymond “Buck” Rodgers said moonshine stills don’t follow health and safety regulations and if made with the wrong equipment, can be deadly.

“People actually they drink this stuff, and then you know you can get lead poisoning. I have people that have died from lead poison because of drinking moonshine,” Rodgers said. “It’s not a healthy drink because it’s not manufactured the right way.”

Sheriff Thomas and Sheriff Rodgers were unsure of how long the still had been in business, but believe it had been there a while based on its setup, and the decay of surrounding trees from the runoff. Thomas believes it had been run within hours of the bust because it was warm to the touch.

Most moonshine is made from corn in the south, but this particular still was using rye.

The sheriff’s offices say operating moonshine still is a felony, and punishable by up to five years in prison.

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