Three Lake Charles residents caught in undercover drug bust

By Special to the American Press

A wrong number may end up costing three Lake Charles residents their freedom.

All three are facing numerous charges after one of them allegedly called detectives with the Combined Anti-Drug Task Force by mistake while looking for marijuana.

Authorities said 19-year-old Xavier L. Johnwell, 718 Tallow Road, made the call on Dec. 28.

“Johnwell stated he dialed the wrong number and that he was looking for his ‘weed’ man,” spokesman James McGee said Monday in a news release. “While speaking with Johnwell, he asked detectives if they knew where he could get some marijuana. Detectives advised Johnwell that they did and arranged to meet Johnwell at Brentwood Park on Illinois Street to make the narcotic transaction.

“At approximately 4 p.m., undercover detectives arrived at the park and observed three individuals inside a car backed into a parking spot.”

McGee said Johnwell was in the vehicle with 19-year-old Edmond J. Thorne, of 1906 13 St., and 21-year-old Kimberly A. Zeno, of 1204 Giovanni St.

“Detectives arrested Johnwell, Thorne and Zeno without incident,” McGee said. “Detectives located a 380 semi-automatic pistol in Johnwell’s waistband of and a .38 revolver in the rear of the car under the passenger seat in direct reach of Thorne.”

All three were charged with conspiracy to commit armed robbery, conspiracy to commit armed robbery with a firearm and conspiracy to possess a CDS I (marijuana) with intent to distribute.

Johnwell and Thorne were also charged with possession of a firearm with intent to commit a crime of violence.

Judge Kent Savoie set bonds for Johnwell and Thorne at $205,000 each and set Zeno’s bond at $190,000.