MOULTRIE, Ga. -- A search warrant tied two suspects to drugs as Colquitt County Sheriff’s Office Investigators in the wake of a completed operation on June 17. One was also charged with animal cruelty after a dead puppy was found in the yard.

Milton Ford, 36, was charged with theft by receiving stolen property, misdemeanor obstruction of an officer, possession of arms by a convicted felon and first offense probation. Antonio Bernard Harper, 23, was charged with misdemeanor obstruction of an officer, misdemeanor cruelty to animals, possession of drug-related object, possession of marijuana with intention to sell, three counts of sale of marijuana, and sale of controlled substance (oxycodone).

Both were caught at Harper’s residence, 324 Fourth Avenue N.W., during a CCSO undercover operation, Investigator Channing McDowell said.

“The search warrant was based on an undercover operation where we had purchased pills as well as marijuana from that residence -- from Mr. Harper,” McDowell said.

During the search warrant, investigators found marijuana, a stolen gun, scales and packaging equipment -- everything indicating marijuana is being sold, he said.

When the team made entry to the house, Harper and Ford tried to run out the residence’s back door. However, they didn’t make it past there and were subsequently detained.

That detainment led to an observation, McDowell said.

“In the backyard, we observed in a kennel, right where Mr. Harper was arrested, a puppy,” McDowell said. “It couldn’t have been very old -- maybe a few months old -- that had been, obviously, dead for a little while.”

This led to Harper’s animal cruelty charge. Both men’s attempt to run led to their obstruction charge. Ford received his theft by receiving stolen property charge -- a felony charge -- because investigators were able to associate the stolen gun with him.

“It was found in a suitcase along with his I.D. card that was laying right beside the gun and there was also mail,” McDowell said. “Everything led you to believe that that was his suitcase -- it had all his personal belongings in it.”

Both men were taken to the Colquitt County Jail.

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