ROCKINGHAM — A man previously convicted on meth charges is accused of having one of the drug’s key ingredients.
Rockingham police arrested 33-year-old Corey William Byrd on felony charges of possession of pseudoephedrine with a prior meth conviction and manufacturing methamphetamine Aug. 7, according to arrest warrants.
Records with the N.C. Department of Public Safety Division of Adult Correction show Byrd was convicted in 2014 of possession or distribution of a meth precursor and possession with intent to sell a Schedule II controlled substance.
Pseudoephedrine is the active ingredient in everyday cold, allergy and sinus medicines, but is also a key component in the illegal manufacture of methamphetamine.
The North Carolina Controlled Substances Act makes it a Class H felony for anyone with a prior meth conviction to possess pseudoephedrine.
Byrd was booked into the Richmond County Jail under a $30,000 bond, but released the same day. He is scheduled to appear in court Aug. 17.
His criminal history goes back to 2004, at age 20, when he was convicted of driving while intoxicated and drinking alcohol underage, driving on the wrong side of the road and operating a vehicle without a license, for which he received probation.
In March 2008, Byrd was sentenced to probation following an assault on a female charge. Three years later, he was arrested for possession of stolen goods, and the next year for injury to property, both of which resulted in probation sentences.
Because meth was becoming a growing problem, the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office and the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation initiated a federal meth conspiracy investigation with former U.S. Attorney Ripley Rand’s office in 2014. Since then, at more than 50 people have been indicted on federal meth charges.
Byrd is the third to be arrested on meth charges in the past two weeks.
Jennifer Mauldin, 44, and Jimmy Horne, 53, were arrested Aug. 2 and given matching charges of felony possession of an unspecified amount of meth, simple possession of 23-and-a-half Xanax pills, five needles and three straws used for ingesting controlled substances, and a suboxone strip, according to the arrest warrants.
Suboxone is used to deal with withdrawal symptoms from opioid use, similar to methadone.
All defendants facing criminal charges are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.
Contact reporter Gavin Stone at 910-817-2674.