Drug bust leads to eight arrests

Eight people were arrested on multiple charges following an investigation of suspected drug activities at a Houma residence, authorities said.

According to the Terrebonne Sheriff’s Office, its Narcotics Task Force began investigating drug-related activity at 101 Ellendale Blvd. several weeks ago after receiving multiple complaints from residents living in the neighborhood.

Narcotics agents made the first three arrests in the investigation on Oct. 16 following a vehicle search of three people who had been staying at the home, authorities said. The search turned up crystal meth, heroin, a Suboxone strip, Pantoprazole pills and used syringes. As a result, agents arrested 32-year-old Ryan Thibodaux, 27-year-old Dinah Smith and 37-year-old Barbara Bollhalter.

Thibodaux was charged with possession of Suboxone; Smith was charged with possession of heroin, possession of crystal meth and drug paraphernalia; and Bollhalter was charged with possession of heroin, possession of crystal meth, possession of a legend drug and drug paraphernalia. In addition, Bollhalter had an outstanding warrant for failing to appear in court, deputies said.

On Wednesday morning, agents executed a search warrant on the Ellendale Boulevard home and seized multiple bags of crystal meth, a bag of marijuana, pipes used to smoke crystal meth, an assortment of prescription pills, digital scales, used syringes, stolen street signs and drug paraphernalia.

Authorities charged Dodie Morris, 26, with intent to distribute crystal meth, possession of marijuana, possession of a legend drug and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Jazmine Babin, 19, was charged with possession with intent to distribute crystal meth, possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Another suspect, Stephen Gonzalez, 27, whose father owns the residence, fled on foot into a nearby cane field shortly before deputies arrived, the Sheriff’s Office said.

Meanwhile, agents received a call regarding a vehicle with two females who had arrived at the Ellendale residence, deputies said. The vehicle’s passenger, Mary Hebert, 58, was found to be in possession of multiple syringes and was issued a misdemeanor summons for possession of drug paraphernalia, the Sheriff’s Office said.

 While searching for Gonzalez, K-9 officers learned the suspect was hiding inside a residence on Lake Crescent Circle after entering through a window, authorities said. The homeowner was not home during the time of the break-in and no injuries were reported. Gonzalez was charged with three counts of possession of legend drug, possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of stolen things and simple burglary of an inhabited dwelling.

After Gonzalez and his accomplices were transported to the Terrebonne Parish jail, medical staff recommended Gonzalez be taken to Chabert Medical Center to be treated for a pre-existing medical condition, authorities said.

Gonzalez slipped out of his handcuffs after being discharged from the hospital and took off on foot, authorities said. With deputies in pursuit, Gonzalez ran through woods and a swamp before crossing Industrial Boulevard and eventually entered a home in an attempt to elude police, the Sheriff’s Office said.

Gonzalez was taken into custody on Acadian Drive and was transported to the Terrebonne Parish jail. He was additionally charged with simple escape, theft under $1,000, two counts of criminal property damage, criminal trespassing and unauthorized entry of an inhabited dwelling.

Sheriff Jerry Larpenter said several of the complaints officers received about the Ellendale residence were from the very people who were staying in the home.

“They were complaining about each other,” Larpenter said. “They hallucinate and become paranoid. These drugs warp your brain. These particular individuals had numerous opportunities to go to rehab, but the best thing that can save them now is prison because if they continue the road they were going on, they would have hurt somebody or themselves.”

Gonzalez is being held on an $181,100 bond, Smith’s bond was set at $75,000, Morris is being held on a $25,000 bond, Thibodaux’s bond is $7,500, Bollholter’s bond is $75,500, Cedotal’s bond is $50,000, Babin was released Thursday after posting a $2,500 bond and Orgeron was released Oct. 22 after paying a $5,000 bond.

 Several of the individuals involved in the investigation have been arrested on drug charges before, Larpenter said.

“These people love doing drugs,” the sheriff said. “Most people learn from their mistakes, but there are some who don’t care how many mistakes they make. It’s a burden on law enforcement. We hope there’s a sentencing that comes after this arrest so the people who live in that neighborhood can be at ease.”

–Staff Writer Dan Copp can be reached at 857-2202 or at dan.copp@houmatoday.com. Follow him on Twitter@DanVCopp