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Five held after drug raid

July 18, 1997

By BRENDAN KIRBY

Staff Writer

Agents from the Washington County Narcotics Task Force arrested five people late Wednesday following one of the largest drug seizures of the year.

Acting on a tip, agents executed a warrant at a room at the Venice Inn on Dual Highway, where they found three people and about 125 grams of crack cocaine, said NTF Director Charles Summers.

Arrested at the motel was Demetrius Howell, 25, of Baltimore, said Summers. Two Hagerstown girls ages 14 and 15, also were at the motel, he said.

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Two other Baltimore men, Arthur Harris, 18, and John Maxwell Holland, 24, were arrested in downtown Hagerstown a short while later, Summers said.

The men were charged with possession with intent to distribute crack cocaine in excess of 50 grams, possession with intent to distribute crack cocaine, possession of crack cocaine and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Howell, Holland and Harris appeared in District Court on Thursday. Bond was denied for Howell; bond was set at $50,000 each for Holland and Harris. All were being held at the Washington County Detention Center.

Summers said agents also seized $385 in cash. He said the crack has a street value of at least $24,000.

Summers said NTF agents seized about 300 grams of crack and powder cocaine in March. But he said Wednesday's raid was one of the biggest this year.

"That's a significant seizure. That's almost a quarter pound of crack," he said. "We don't see that often."

Summers said authorities believe the suspects were dealing drugs in the Jonathan Street area. He said the investigation continues and further arrests are possible.

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