Major drug bust leads to two arrests

Published 11:17 am Wednesday, January 12, 2022

A Lake Charles man and woman were arrested last week after detectives discovered $1 million worth of illegal narcotics, Calcasieu Parish Sheriff Tony Mancuso said at a news conference Wednesday.

Caleb D. Barfield, 43, and Kimberly R. Breaux, 30, 1700 Migonette St., Apt. A, were arrested on several drug-related charges after the Combined Anti-Drug Task Force searched the home and a storage unit on Sharon Lane Jan. 6.

Mancuso said detectives found more than 15 pounds of suspected methamphetamine and fentanyl powder mixture, more than 27 pounds of home-pressed suspected methamphetamine tablets, more than 600 grams of pressed purported oxycodone tablets, more than 170 grams of fentanyl gel and 50 ounces of promethazine syrup.

“In our opinion, this was a significant bust for our area and could have saved many lives,” Mancuso said.

Two semi-automatic handguns were also found, along with a commercial-grade tablet pressing machine, more than $20,000 in cash and a small amount of marijuana and drug paraphernalia. A juvenile was also found in the home, Mancuso said.

Lake Charles Police Chief Shawn Caldwell said overdose deaths have risen from 52 in 2020 to 100 last year. He warned residents that street drugs possibly laced with fentanyl can be manufactured and dyed to resemble various pills. He said a grain of rice is large enough to contain seven fatal doses of fentanyl.

“That’s how potent and how powerful this stuff is,” Caldwell said. “Please, be aware of it.”

Mancuso said deputies now carry the overdose treatment known as Narcan in their squad cars.

“It’s weekly, almost daily … that we’re trying to revive citizens,” he said. “Otherwise, it would be even worse.”

Calcasieu District Attorney Stephen Dwight said this investigation was a collaborative, long-term effort that involved several law enforcement agencies.

Barfield is charged with six counts of possession of controlled dangerous substance II with intent to distribute or manufacture; two counts of possession of a firearm in the presence of a CDS; two counts of illegal carrying of a weapon by a convicted felon; money laundering; illegal use of CDS in the presence of a juvenile; and possession of drug paraphernalia. Judge Tony Fazzio set his bond at $803,000.

Mancuso said Barfield has several felony drug-related convictions. Dwight said Barfield faces up to 80 years in prison with these recent charges.

“I don’t think it’s uncommon that we think someone like him should be put to jail and never get out because he’s harming so many people with this drug,” Mancuso said.

Breaux is charged with two counts of possession of CDS II; illegal use of a CDS in the presence of a juvenile: possession of a firearm in presence of a CDS; and possession of drug paraphernalia. Her bond was set at $59,000, and she bonded out Jan. 7.

Mancuso said the investigation is ongoing, and more arrests are expected