RIPLEY - A Jackson County attorney was among those caught in a methamphetamine dragnet police employed late last month in an effort to put a dent on the drug's impact on the county.
After two days of hearing evidence, a special Jackson County grand jury on Monday, July 20 unsealed indictments against 51 residents for meth-related charges. Earlier that morning, arrest teams consisting of the Jackson County Sheriff's Department, the Ripley and Ravenswood Police departments, the West Virginia State Police and the U.S. Marshal's Service fanned out across the county executing arrest warrants.
Among the 43 arrested was Jessica Anne Sullivan, a Ravenswood attorney specializing in family, and criminal law.
According the indictment, Sullivan, 31, was charged with eight counts each of possession of a substance used to manufacture methamphetamine, and conspiracy. The only other detailed information in the indictment is that she acted in conjunction with Roger Hinzman, Richard Cooper, Larry Thompson and Jeremiah Johnson between Dec. 8 and Feb. 1.
Hinzman, Cooper and Thompson, all of Ravenswood, were arrested earlier this year on similar charges.
According to records in Jackson Magistrate Court, Thompson was charged on Feb. 14 with one charge of operating or attempting to operate a meth lab, a felony, and one charge of possession of meth, a misdemeanor. The possession charge was later dismissed, and a magistrate in March found enough probable cause to send the operation charge to the grand jury.
On May 28, both Hinzman and Cooper were charged with one count each of operating or attempting to operate a meth lab, and possession of pseudoephedrine, all felonies. Both men, records show, waived their preliminary hearing, were released on $40,000 bond and placed on home confinement.
Thompson, Hinzman and Cooper were all arrested by Jackson Sheriff's Deputy R.E. Mellinger.
As of presstime, Sullivan was scheduled to be arraigned on Thursday, July 30 before Judge Thomas C. Evans III. Currently, she is free on $50,000 bond.
Sullivan's attorney, Morgan B. Hayes, was unavailable for comment, and did not return repeated telephone calls.
Jackson Circuit Court Case No. 09-F-126