Four face felony drug charges after sheriff’s office makes bust

Four people face criminal drug distribution charges after Grand County sheriff deputies two weeks ago allegedly found them in possession of roughly an ounce of methamphetamine and heroin, scales and hundreds of dollars in cash, a check and debit card.

The bust started when Grand County police dispatch received a call from someone who wanted to talk to police about “a friend.”

Sarah Hansell

An officer from the Grand County Sheriff’s Office said they knew the person who called had been frequenting a specific trailer on Murphy Lane. Police said that the trailer was the address of Sarah Hansell, 36, who deputies later arrested and charged with two felony counts of possessing a controlled substance with intent to distribute, obstruction of justice and possession of drug paraphernalia.

According to police, a deputy went to the trailer and saw an SUV he knew to be driven by Jesse Mallon, 27, who police later arrested and charged with one felony count of possession with intent to distribute, attempted possession of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Jesse Mallon

As the deputy approached the trailer, he allegedly saw in a window of the trailer Mallon, Hansell and two other men sitting around a table with a meth pipe and needle. The deputy allegedly saw one man take a hit off the pipe.

The deputy reported that he went back to his car, called for backup to the house and filed for a search warrant of the trailer. As he was waiting for approval of the search warrant, Mallon, James Dowdy, 37, and Brian Cox, 47, all of whom were later arrested, exited the trailer and approached a Jeep outside the trailer.

James Dowdy

As the men began opening doors of the car, officers announced their presence and the men allegedly began to run but stopped after police instructed them to do so. Officers allegedly found small clear sandwich bags and a shoulder bag outside the car. Police later said the contents of the bags consisted of 8.4 grams of heroin and 20 grams of meth.

After stopping Mallon, Dowdy and Cox, deputies then did a search of the trailer, where they said they found Hansell was the sole occupant. Police allegedly found in the trailer various drug paraphernalia, bags of what appeared to be meth and marijuana partially flushed down the toilet, a spoon containing heroin, a meth pipe, two digital scales and numerous baggies.

Brian Cox

Police then searched the Jeep and allegedly found more paraphernalia items and a cell phone.

Mallon later denied to police that he was using, possessing or distributing illegal drugs. Cox told police that he was neither using nor possessing illegal drugs.

At the county jail, police allegedly found Dowdy in possession of about 1.5 grams of meth and Cox in possession of $800 in cash, a check in the name of a deceased person and someone else’s debit card.

Dowdy faces two felony counts of intent to distribute a controlled substance, one possession charge and possession of drug paraphernalia. Cox faces felony distribution charges, a felony charge for unlawfully possessing a financial card and possession of paraphernalia.

Cox allegedly assaults jail officer

The day after his arrest, Cox allegedly attacked a police officer as he was being put into a holding cell. According to police, Cox “took an aggressive stance” toward an officer escorting him to his cell, broke free of the officer’s grip, went into the cell to grab a plunger and lunged at the officer with the plunger raised “as if to strike” him.

The officer said he attempted to shut the door on Cox, who pushed through into the hallway and continued charging at the officer. Police eventually apprehended Cox, who now, in addition to drug charges, faces felony charges of aggravated assault by a prisoner and aggravated escape and a misdemeanor charge of interfering with a police officer.