Lake Charles, Louisiana – A Lake Charles man was arrested after allegedly throwing drugs out the window during a chase over the I-210 bridge.
Detectives from the Combined Anti-Drug Task Force (C.A.T. Team) in Calcasieu Parish collaborated with the Lake Charles Field Office of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) to begin a joint drug investigation on September 7. They were investigating the potential presence of commercial level pill press machines in the local area, which could be used to create pressed fentanyl pills.
On September 11, law enforcement officers were monitoring activities at a home in the 600 Block of Beam Street in Lake Charles related to an ongoing investigation. They saw Bryan J. Henry, a 44-year-old resident of Lake Charles, arrive at the residence where two industrial pill-making machines had been previously spotted.
Henry was later observed departing from the premises, prompting the detectives to secure a search warrant tied to the drug investigation. They were able to execute this warrant with the help of the CPSO ACT-Team. Consequently, they confiscated two pill press machines, various large plastic containers holding around 32 pounds of synthetic cannabis, one tablet each of fentanyl and MDMA, lab equipment for manufacturing synthetic cannabis, and a handgun.
As the search warrant was being carried out, detectives were also monitoring Henry who was seen at an address in the 1000 Block of N. Prater Street in Lake Charles.
When Henry departed from the residence, detectives tried to stop him, but he escaped, going westwards on I-210 close to Nelson Road in Lake Charles. On crossing the I-210 bridge, Henry allegedly threw presumed illegal drugs and drug-related items from the window. Despite the pursuit by detectives, Henry didn’t stop until he lost control and collided with a larger vehicle, an 18-wheeler, on the westbound side of I-10, near the 9-mile marker in Vinton.
During an extended inquiry, following a search of Henry’s truck, enforced by probable cause, investigators found several large containers holding roughly 42 pounds of synthetic cannabis. Also found were a large assortment of zip-lock-style plastic bags used for packaging the synthetic drug, an automatic weighing and filling machine used in packaging the substance, and two tubs containing an unidentified white dust-like substance.
Due to the seized contents so far in this probe, investigators were able to secure a search warrant for the property Henry was earlier seen exiting on N. Prater Street.
When this warrant was executed, investigators found an additional 32 grams of synthetic marijuana along with indications of a clandestine lab used in the production of the synthetic drug.
The estimated street value of the confiscated drugs is around $123,000. Similarly, the estimated street value of the lab parts is roughly $14,000.
Henry was apprehended and moved to a nearby hospital to receive treatment for slight injuries he suffered in the accident. Afterward, he was booked into the Calcasieu Correctional Center where he was charged with aggravated flight from an officer; obstruction of justice; possession of CDS I with intent to distribute; creation and operation of a clandestine lab; and a traffic violation. Detectives found out that Henry is also presently on parole.
The probe is still ongoing, with the possibility of additional arrests.
The Joint Anti-Drug Task Force is a cooperative initiative, composed of law enforcement personnel coming from local, state, and federal levels, with the aim to stop the trade of illegal drugs in Calcasieu Parish.
An arrest is an indication that probable cause exists to believe the subject was involved in the offense alleged. All persons are presumed innocent until proven guilty.