Friday, the arrest of 38-year-old Benjamin Joseph Butler from Gulfport for felony possession of marijuana, cultivation of marijuana and federal firearms violations. The arrest of Butler stemmed from a joint investigation between the Harrison County Sheriff’s Office Narcotics Division, Mississippi Bureau of Narcotics (MBN), US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (ATF) regarding marijuana distribution, cultivation and firearm violations to include possession of improvised suppressors devices.
On October 18, 2019, the aforementioned agencies executed a search warrant at the residence of Butler located in the 11300 block of Moran Road in Gulfport, north of the interstate in Harrison County. Butler was taken into custody without incident as he left the residence where a subsequent search of the residence yielded numerous firearms, two improvised suppressor devices, (16) dosage units of LSD, over (3) pounds of high-grade marijuana, and (33) ounces of THC liquid.
Additionally, investigators located a marijuana grow operation consisting of (8) large plants and approximately (1) pound of recently harvested marijuana. It was also learned that Butler was extracting THC liquid from the plant material utilizing a hazardous procedure involving a butane heat extraction method. Based on the hazardous nature of the extraction process, the residence had to be examined and rendered safe by the DEA Hazardous Environment Response Team.
According to Harrison County Sheriff’s Office Narcotics Sergeant Rob Drace, Butler was charged with felony charges of possession of marijuana with intent to distribute, cultivation of marijuana, possession of (LSD) and federal firearms violations.
Butler is currently incarcerated in the Harrison County Jail where he is held without bond as he is currently on bond for charges of possession of marijuana with intent to distribute through Lafayette County, Mississippi.