Investigation leads to drug arrest

Published 12:10 pm Wednesday, April 6, 2022

An investigation by the Washington Parish Sheriff’s Office Drug Task Force ended with the March 28 arrest of Osric Merrell Hines, 44, a resident of Foster Town Road, according to WPSO Chief Criminal Deputy Mike Haley.

As a result of the ongoing investigation, detectives obtained both an arrest warrant for Hines and a search warrant for his residence, Haley said. Task Force detectives, along with other WPSO deputies and a Louisiana State Police officer, took Hines into custody before searching his residence.

“Inside the residence, officers located quantities of various types of illegal drugs, including cocaine, more than $1,000 in cash, a semi-automatic pistol and a set of digital scales typically used to weigh drugs as they are packaged for sale,” Haley said.

Hines was transported to the Washington Parish Jail, where he was booked on two counts of distribution of drugs, possession with intent to distribute illegal drugs, possession of illegal drugs, being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm, possession of a controlled dangerous substance with a weapon present, obstruction of justice and transactions involving proceeds from drug offenses. His bond was set at $175,000.

Haley said that Hines has several previous arrests in Washington Parish including charges of distribution of illegal drugs. He has a habit of not appearing for court hearings, resulting in numerous charges of failure to appear in court. He was arrested in 2017 and 2018 on warrants for various offenses, including failure to pay child support.

“Our detectives have been watching Hines for some time now, and were able to obtain enough evidence for the new warrants,” Washington Parish Sheriff Randy Seal said. “It’s always a good blow for decency and civility when we can take another drug dealer out of our community and into our jail. Our officers did an excellent job and I am so pleased with their work.”