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Operation I.C.E. Storm: Pounds of meth, cocaine removed from I-95 in Sumter County

One suspect also attempted to escape but was stopped by spike strips - only for officers to find he had escaped a previous stop just weeks earlier.
Credit: Sumter County Sheriff's Office
Operation I.C.E. Storm

SUMTER COUNTY, S.C. — The Sumter County Sheriff's Office is thanking multiple agencies for their assistance in an operation that took pounds of deadly drugs off the streets.

Operation I.C.E. Storm targeted a section of I-95 that runs through the county on the week of Labor Day. The goal of the law enforcement event was to enforce traffic laws and also to "detect possible criminal behavior" during traffic stops.

The sheriff's office said deputies and others involved ultimately made nine arrests and issued four tickets for possession of marijuana between Sept.  7 and 10.

However, the enforcement operation also led to the seizure of roughly 2.3 pounds of cocaine, 1.5 pounds of meth, 10 grams of heroin, and seven pounds of marijuana. Five illegal guns, over $100,000, and a car were also seized during Operation I.C.E. Storm

"Operation I.C.E. Storm has been successful since we started in 2018 and this year is no different," Sheriff Anthony Dennis said in a written statement.

At least one of the arrests also followed a brief chase that involved the suspect wrecking after running through spike strips. Investigators later learned that the man, 26-year-old Jonathan Bridges of Orangeburg, was wanted out of Florence County for a similar incident involving Carolina Highway Patrol just weeks earlier. Investigators would later find a hidden compartment in the car that had illegal drugs and money inside.

Those facing charges range in age from 21 to 54 and came from as far away as Florida and New York.