The Palestine Herald, Palestine, Texas

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February 27, 2014

Seven jailed in drug bust by Anderson County Sheriff's Office drug unit

PALESTINE —

Seven suspects remained in the Anderson County Jail on Wednesday following a drug bust by the Anderson County Sheriff's Office Drug Investigation Unit earlier that day in a Palestine apartment complex.

According to Sheriff Greg Taylor, subjects Christina Gonzales, 17, of Palestine; Taylor Bauman, 20, of Gatesville; Michael Gardner, 26, of Palestine; Mark Harkcom, 24, of Palestine; Abel Estrada, 21, of Palestine; Hilario Gonzales Jr., 20, of Palestine; and Kyle McCauley, 19, of Palestine, all were arrested in the raid, which occurred at about 7:30 a.m. Wednesday.

“The sheriff's office tactical team forced entry into an apartment (on the 200 block of Church St.) across from Reagan Park in Palestine,” Taylor said, after a search warrant was issued by County Court At-law Judge Jeff Doran.

“The site was under investigation for a period of time and the DIU made several controlled buys of methamphetamine,” he added. “The operation went smoothly. Ten officers exited the tactical unit and hit the door.”

During the search, officers located a small amount of money — a few $100 bills, about 6 grams of methamphetamine, numerous items of drug paraphernalia and several power tools.

“Those tools were reported stolen in a burglary that occurred on Sunday,” Taylor said. “It is likely that those items had been traded for drugs. It shows a definite connection between drugs and theft.”

One of the suspects ran out, but was easily captured by officers.”

All seven suspects were charged with manufacture/delivery of a controlled substance-PG1, 4-200 grams, and engaging in organized criminal activity. Harkcom was issued an additional charge for violating parole and McCauley, who attempted to run from the scene, was charged with resisting/evading arrest.

No bond has been set on the subjects.

“I am very proud of all our officers, especially our drug unit investigators,” Taylor said. “They are really trying to make a difference in combating the county's drug problem, and are trying to send a message.”

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