Man facing drug charges in Mint Hill to appear in court

Michael MacConnell
Michael MacConnell

By Brigida Mack - email

MINT HILL, NC (WBTV) - Mint Hill Police is adding a full-time narcotics detective to the department to combat what they told WBTV is an ongoing drug problem.

This, after authorities said more than 300 marijuana plants and items possibly used to manufacture methamphetamine were seized by authorities from Michael MacConnell's home in Mint Hill Wednesday night.  He is scheduled to make his first court appearance in District Court on Friday at 1 p.m.

Talking only to WBTV Thursday night, Chief Tim Ledford made it clear where he stands on drug activity when he said, "We know about it. We're coming for you."

Chief Ledford says he actually learned from other police chiefs across Mecklenburg County where dealers were getting their drugs.

"Some of the suspects that have been arrested by other agencies are saying they can go to Mint Hill and buy their drugs because they're not being proactive about it,"said Ledford.  "That's going to change. We are going to be proactive here in Mint Hill and we are going to put a stop to it."

That's good news to folks like Phyliss Crump, who grew up in Mint Hill and said, "Good for the chief! I'm all about that--I say go chief!"

Crump also said the community's small-town feel makes it an ideal target for criminals.

"People tend to seek out areas where they don't think that you know there will be anybody looking for them or where they can take shelter and hide," she said.

Mint Hill Police seized the drugs and chemicals after serving a search warrant at 11100 Lawyers Road.  The investigation started after police say the suspect came to the police station, saying he had been attacked.  When they went out to the house, they found the drugs.

Police arrested Michael MacConnell, 40, and charged him with several crimes including trafficking, possession of drug paraphernalia and manufacturing controlled substances.  The SBI (State Bureau of Investigation) and DEA (Drug Enforcement Agency) finished processing the scene Thursday afternoon.

A chemist from the SBI was called to the scene to identify the chemicals discovered inside the home, but police have not been told what those chemicals are at this time.

Officers said that they seized approximately 300 plants in various stages of maturity and approximately 30 lbs that had already been processed.  The DEA is examining the potency of the marijuana before determining a street value for the marijuana that was collected.

Wednesday night, investigators at the scene said the chemicals could have caused an explosion strong enough to take out the whole neighborhood.

MacConnell is being held on a $36,000 secured bond at the Mecklenburg County Jail.

©2009 WBTV. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.