Breckenridge Texan

Sheriff’s Office traffic stop leads to drug-related arrests

May 06
19:52 2019

This weekend, the Stephens County Sheriff’s Office arrested a couple for the first degree felony offense of dealing methamphetamine, following a routine traffic stop. As of Monday afternoon, the two remained in the Stephens County Jail.

Jimmy Merrifield

According to information from Sheriff Will Holt, at about 3:15 p.m. Saturday, May 4, Deputy Bill Flournoy stopped a vehicle in the 100 block of South Merrill Avenue for not displaying license plates or registration. The driver, 44-year-old Jimmy Merrifield, has a lengthy criminal history involving a myriad of offenses related to drug dealing, drug possession, weapon possession, and evading law enforcement and is known to the sheriff’s office as a suspected dealer of methamphetamine, a media release states.

Flournoy arrested Merrifield for traffic violations and, while searching him, found a methamphetamine pipe with a usable amount of suspected methamphetamine inside the pipe, according to the media release.

Deputy Randy Hooks and officers from the Breckenridge Police Department provided backup to Flournoy. Holt and his K9 partner reported to the scene to help with the investigation, and the K9 alerted on a hidden area in the truck located underneath the dashboard but above the glovebox. According to the report, a concealed bag was found containing a digital measuring scale and an empty plastic bag.

Jessica Ledbetter

The female passenger, 24-year-old Jessica Ledbetter, had a marijuana pipe in her purse and was arrested for possession of drug paraphernalia. The sheriff’s release states that a search of Ledbetter yielded a magnetic box with approximately 7 grams of methamphetamine, less than two ounces of marijuana, and more plastic baggies typically used for packaging drugs for sale.

Both Ledbetter and Merrifield were charged with the first degree felony offense of Manufacture or Delivery of a Controlled Substance (Methamphetamine) Penalty Group 1 equal to or more than 4 grams but less than 200 grams. Merrifield is currently on bond for this same charge and others out of Denton County, the report states.

According to Holt, the two are boyfriend and girlfriend and have been living in Breckenridge recently. Ledbetter is originally from Breckenridge, and Merrifield’s hometown is unknown to the sheriff, but he has reportedly lived here off and on over the years, as well as having lived in other places, including Lake Texoma and Denton.

Monday afternoon, bond was set for the two — $100,000 for Merrifield and $40,000 for Ledbetter, according to Holt.

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