IREDELL COUNTY, N.C. -- A seven month long, undercover investigation leads to the arrest of a prominent black tar heroin dealer, and delivers a major blow to that drug’s distribution in Iredell County, officials said.
Investigators say 29 year-old Barry Dwayne Bowles was a drug dealer to other drug dealers and conducted some of his business in a Food Lion parking lot on Shearers Road in Mooresville.
Bowles is charged with two counts of trafficking heroin, possession of drug paraphernalia and simple possession of a controlled substance.
Court records show he was on probation from a prior arrest.
Investigators say they found 25 grams of black tar heroin on Bowles when they arrested him last week.
"This is not your person on the street who is a user, or a small time user. This is a person, with this amount of weight, that's definitely dealing a large amount. He has a lot of dealers that he is selling to,” said Maj. Darren Campbell with the Iredell County Sheriff’s Office.
"Absolutely petrifies me,” said neighbor Frank Skidmore. He shops at that grocery store and parks in that lot.
"My family shops there. My kids shop there. My wife shops there. We just take it for granted that things are safe, but you never know, do you?" he said.
Investigators say Bowles' heroin deals were often done during the day as a safety in numbers type thing.
The seizure is considered one of the largest of black tar heroin in county history.
Investigators haven't seen a lot of it in southern Iredell County, but say the heroin Bowles was allegedly selling came from Charlotte.
"You've got to stay ahead of it, but this will definitely have an impact locally on the distribution network here,” Campbell said.
Police say that seven month long investigation led them to 20 other people in the drug distribution ring, and more arrests are coming.
Bowles was booked into the Iredell County Jail under a $75,000 bond. He is due in court later this month.