Emitt Raymond Hall, 50, of Reynolds Branch in the Floyd County community of Hi Hat, was picked up without incident at the highway garage off KY 680 by UNITE detectives and Kentucky State Police Trooper Shawn Little on Floyd County District Court warrants for second-degree trafficking in a controlled substance and two counts of trafficking in marijuana less than 8 ounces.
Hall is charged with selling drugs while on the job. The arrest followed a five-week undercover investigation by Operation UNITE into reported drug activity at the Minnie Highway Garage in Floyd County.
Police found one and one-half Hydrocodone tablets on Hall after his arrest, resulting in additional charges of second-degree possession of a controlled substance and prescription controlled substance not in original container.
Hall was lodged in the Floyd County Detention Center.
“The Kentucky Transportation Cabinet contacted UNITE in early May after they had received information of possible drug use and drug sales by employees,” said Dan Smoot, law enforcement director for UNITE. “Detectives were asked to determine whether these allegations had any merit.”
“Our investigation resulted in an undercover officer purchasing drugs on two occasions, and drugs were being used by this worker while on the job,” Smoot said. “We did not find any sale or drug use to or from any other employee.”
On one occasion Hall sold two potted marijuana plants “of high quality” to the undercover officer, and later sold two more potted marijuana plants and a Hydrocodone tablet, Smoot said, adding the plants “were brought to work” for distribution.
Hall worked on a crew that conducted road maintenance along state highways. His main job was as a truck driver and occasionally operated other pieces of equipment.