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MADGE team arrests six in drugs and weapons case

The Medford Area Drug and Gang Enforcement team arrested six people on numerous drug and weapon charges in two separate cases this week.

Early Friday, MADGE, the Medford police SWAT team and Jackson County sheriff's deputies searched a home in the 4100 block of Independence School Road in southwest Medford.

The warrant was prompted by a monthlong investigation that revealed drug sales occurring at the home.

As investigators arrived, Caleb Drew Haney, 20, who lives at the home, fled the area and was captured by officers. He had a gun shoved in his waistband, MADGE Lt. Tim Doney said.

Haney was charged with manufacture, possession and delivery of methamphetamine, four counts of being a felon in possession of a firearm and a probation violation.

Also arrested were Kimberly Louise Chavez, 19, who lives at the home, on charges of possession of methamphetamine and a warrant for third-degree theft, and Bernie George Helms, 20, of Phoenix, on charges of two counts of unlawful possession of a firearm.

Investigators found two handguns on Helms at the time of his arrest.

Doney said the SWAT team was called because investigators got word that the suspects were often armed.

"The danger level increases when you're dealing with armed drug dealers," Doney said. "The good news here is no one was hurt."

On Thursday, MADGE officers searched a home in the 1300 block of Siskiyou Boulevard in Medford after receiving word that drug activity was going on at the residence.

Investigators seized heroin, Oxycontin, drug paraphernalia, scales and packaging.

Arrested were Charles Eric Jackson, 21, who lives at the home, on manufacture, possession and delivery of heroin and possession of synthetic drugs; Aieriel Elizabeth Ann Davidson, 21, a local transient, on possession of heroin; and Christopher Brian Lybarger, 26, who also lives at the house, on felony probation violations stemming from a previous second-degree assault conviction.

"This case is interesting because it shows that heroin is coming back big time in the valley," Doney said. "We are seeing more of it on the street as the price of prescription medications on the black market is rising."

Doney said the heroin was in a smokable form that lacks the stigma of injectable forms.

"We are seeing a whole new demographic using heroin now," Doney said. "People seem more willing to use the smokable form."

Reach reported Chris Conrad at 541-776-4471; or e-mail him cconrad@mailtribune.com.