6 arrested, 14 at large after police raid Par Mar store tied to drug activity

6 arrested in gas station raid
Published: Nov. 29, 2022 at 3:15 PM EST
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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) - Charleston Police responded Tuesday to a gas station on Washington Street East due to reported drug activity, and officers netted six arrests.

Investigative Services Bureau Chief Lt. Tony Hazelett said police were executing search warrants at the Par Mar Store as well as a home across the street from the gas station as part of a lengthy narcotics investigation conducted by the Special Enforcement Division.

A restraining order was placed on the door of the closed business, and police seized fentanyl, methamphetamine, heroin and crack cocaine throughout the duration of the investigation.

The investigation began in the summer following a complaint about possible drug activity in the parking lot of the Par Mar, officials report.

“Once we started the investigation, we quickly realized we had a bigger issue,” Hazelett said.

Hazelett says the investigation resulted in 20 arrest warrants and two search warrants related to the conspiracy or distribution of narcotics.

Six people were arrested as of 11:30 Tuesday night according to Criminal Complaints filed in Kanawha County Magistrate Court:

  • Marcus Holmes, Detroit
  • Bryant Williams, Detroit
  • Ciera Thomas, Charleston
  • Beverly Lewis, Charleston
  • Jemel Waters, Charleston
  • Izreal Mitchem, Huntington

According to Hazelett, drugs were purchased in the gas station parking lot, as well as inside the store.

At least one gas station employee was involved, but police say the gas station’s owners were not involved in the investigation.

Police say 14 people remain at large.

Per the posted temporary restraining order, the store will be closed at least until Dec. 7, when the issue is next expected to be taken up by a judge.

Further information has not been released.

More information is expected to be released Wednesday.

Keep checking the WSAZ app for the latest information.