CATAWBA COUNTY, N.C. - Just 24 hours after Catawba County deputies arrested dozens of suspected drug dealers in a mass roundup, many of them are now back on the streets.
On Wednesday morning, the sheriff's office launched "Operation 17-76," a campaign to arrest 76 people for various drug offenses, particularly for dealing heroin and methamphetamine to undercover officers.
By mid-afternoon, deputies had arrested 44 suspects. But according to the jail's online database, at least 20 of those people bonded out by Thursday afternoon.
A law enforcement source told NBC Charlotte's Brandon Goldner that some of those arrested bonded out so quickly that they were able to go home before the deputies themselves could.
The Sheriff's Office has no control over a suspect's bond. A magistrate sets a bond based on both state law and local rules established by that judicial district's judges.