MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Local News

January 15, 2013

Man, woman face drug charges

— A Maysville couple was charged Tuesday after being arrested for allegedly offering to sell more than 300 pain pills to an undercover Muskogee County Sheriff’s Office deputy.

Jimmie Sumpter, 67, and Caroline Hawbaker, 66, are charged with unlawful possession of controlled drug with intent to distribute.

Sumpter was released from the Muskogee County/City Detention Center on $30,000 bond while Hawbaker was ordered held on $20,000 bond.

Court documents state the pair met with the undercover deputy at Oktaha Road and U.S. 69 and attempted to sell Hydrocodone, a prescription pain reliever; Alprazolam (Xanax), a prescription drug used to treat anxiety and panic disorders; and Carisprodol (Soma), a prescription muscle relaxer.

Hawbaker returns to court today. Sumpter will appear in court for a sounding docket Jan. 29, where a date for his preliminary hearing will be set.

The sexagenarians were arrested by county law enforcers Sunday afternoon.

Lt. Mike Grace of the Muskogee County Sheriff’s Office said the pair drove from Maysville, about an hour south of Oklahoma City, to Muskogee to sell a total of 359 pills to an undercover deputy.

“We’d received a tip that concerned these people selling a lot of pills,” he said. “We made contact with them on three or four different occasions, and made a deal on these pills for them to bring this many in.”

Grace said the couple agreed to transport the pills for $6 a pill, putting the value of the narcotics at $2,154.

“Our belief is that they’ve been doing this for a while,” he said. “We took a little more than $4,600 off them that we feel was gained off these pill sales.”

Grace said prescription pain medication addiction is a rising problem in this area.

“We’re focusing on this because it’s such a big problem, it’s outrageous,” he said. “You stop and think about it, $2,100 is a lot of money for pills. That just shows what kind of problem it is. I mean, while we were on the phone with them, they made two separate deals with other people. This was no small-time thing.”

Tuesday's story about the arrest can be found here.

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