Major drug bust sends four to jail

Published 12:00 am Friday, July 10, 2009


LAPLACE — During a late night drug bust at a LaPlace residence Monday, St. John Parish narcotics agents uncovered stolen weapons, a large amount of cash and more than a kilogram of crack and powder cocaine, which was found hidden throughout the house, said Sheriff Wayne Jones during a press conference Wednesday.

Three LaPlace men and a Convent woman were arrested during the raid of the home, located at 469 Sycamore Loop in LaPlace. The bust was part of a four-month long investigation that started with a tip from a concerned resident of the neighborhood.

Jones said detectives who executed the search warrant at the home found the drugs stuffed inside a hole in one of the walls and concealed within containers of everyday household products.

St. John authorities said Anthony Belvin, 27, the resident of the raided home, was booked early Tuesday with possession of marijuana and ecstacy, possession with intent to distribute more than 400 grams of cocaine, possession of drug paraphernalia, illegal possession of stolen firearms, possession of firearms with obliterated serial numbers and two counts of illegal possession of a firearm during a sale of a controlled dangerous substance. He is being held at the Sherman Walker Correctional Facility in LaPlace in lieu of $100,000 bond.

Jones said Belvin, who has 28 prior arrests ranging from possession of stolen property to weapons and narcotics related charges, is described as a mid- to upper-level dealer who is believed to be a major source in the transportation of cocaine throughout the parish.

“I’m working closely with the District Attorney’s Office to see to it that this man is put away quickly and for a long time,” Jones said. “I’m glad we could get him off the streets.”

Also arrested Wednesday was Belvin’s girlfriend, Tycara Washington, 19, of 8191 Pleasant Hill St., Convent. Detectives said she was inside the home at the time of the raid and was booked on all the same charges. Washington also remains in the parish jail in lieu of $100,000 bond.

Narcotics detectives said Wednesday said that when authorities arrived at the Sycamore Loop home with the warrant, just after 10 p.m. Monday, Belvin was seen talking to two other men in the driveway. The detectives believed they were interrupting a drug sale because the two other men at the home were in possession of drugs. Both men — Dominic Cooper, 28, 1945 Williamsburg Drive, and Juan Coleman, 29, 20 Sawgrass Drive — were arrested in the raid. The deal was one of many that took place out of Belvin’s home.

Coleman was booked with possession of marijuana and Cooper was booked with possession of cocaine and issuing worthless checks. Colemen was freed after posting $1,500 for bail, while Cooper remains in prison in lieu of $17,800.

Capt. Mark Fournet, narcotics commander for the Sheriff’s Office said as detectives began to search the home they uncovered drugs stashed away inside a potato chip can and a shoebox. Further inspection revealed drugs concealed inside a shaving cream can and a spray can with false bottoms. Fournet said in all, detectives recovered more than a kilogram of cocaine with an estimated street value of about $50,000.

In addition to the drugs, detectives also discovered a rifle that was stolen in St. John Parish, a handgun with an obliterated serial number that is also believed to be stolen and about $1,300 in cash.

Fournet said investigators still believe other people are involved in the case and said the investigation is still in progress. He said more arrests may be forthcoming. He added the four arrests made Tuesday show the true value of help from concerned residents in the area.