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Man arrested in drug trafficking that started last summer

August 14, 2002

charlestown@herald-mail.com

CHARLES TOWN, W.Va. - A 23-year-old man was arrested Tuesday as part of an ongoing investigation of drug trafficking in the South West Street area that resulted in the arrest of at least seven people last summer, police said.

James M. Lockley was charged with conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance within 1,000 feet of a school, according to Jefferson County Magistrate Court records.

The school is Wright Denny Elementary School on West Congress Street, according to Charles Town Police Chief Mike Aldridge.

Lockley was being held in the Eastern Regional Jail Tuesday afternoon on $50,000 bail.

Lockley listed an address of 729 Fox Glen, Kearneysville, and 1333 Salem Ave., Hagerstown, said court records.

Police believe Lockley lives at the Hagerstown address but gets his mail at the Kearneysville address, said Charles Town Police Department Detective Steve Harris.

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Lockley was arrested after a surveillance operation on July 3 last year spotted a person parking a car in a gravel parking lot beside 416 S. West St., court papers said.

The person in the video was observed making multiple hand-to-hand transactions with people, exchanging suspected crack cocaine for money, according to court papers.

The transactions were recorded on video, according to court records.

Lockley was not arrested until now because it took time to identify some of the people in the video, Harris said.

South West Street has historically had problems with drug trafficking, and the drug bust there last August was the third major sting in the area in the last 12 years.

Although drug trafficking has decreased in the city, police have said it is a problem they will always have to battle.

Conviction on a charge of conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance within 1,000 feet of a school carries a possible punishment of one to five years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.

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