Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

November 15, 2012

Local business owner arrested on drug charges

KATE COIL
Bluefield Daily Telegraph

BLUEFIELD — The part owner of a local laundromat is in custody following the discovery of more than 800 hydromorphone pills on his property early Wednesday morning.

Tyler Frazier Thorpe, 71, of Bluefield was charged with delivery of a controlled substance and possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver after 868 hydromorphone pills were discovered in his possession, according to Lt. C.S. Myers with the Bluefield Police Department.

Myers said the arrest was the result of a three-month on-going investigation undertaken by the Southern Regional Jail and Violent Crime Task Force, West Virginia State Police Bureau of Criminal Investigation, West Virginia State Police Special Response Team and the Bluefield Police Department.

Myers said the pills were discovered after search warrants were executed Wednesday at Thorpe’s home at 179 Roanoke Street and the T&K Laundromat also on Roanoke Street, of which Thorpe is a part owner.

“We found 868 hydromorphone pills that were seized,” Myers said. “Those are a schedule II controlled substance with a street value of $30,000. Additionally, $11,529 in cash was seized during the search.”

Myers said additional charges may be pending against Thorpe.

“Right now, he is facing charges just through the state,” Myers said. “He is facing multiple pending charges related to the delivery of a controlled substance and possession with intent to deliver. However, this case might go federal under the Bluefield Pill Initiative, which would mean more federal charges.”

Myers said Thorpe was arraigned this morning and is presently being held at the Southern Regional Jail in Beaver on a $50,000 cash or surety bond.

According to Myers, the investigation into the incident remains ongoing.

— Contact Kate Coil at kcoil@bdtonline.com