Crime Tracker

Drug agent warns of potential fentanyl-laced pot after big bust in Gallatin

GALLATIN, Tenn. (WKRN) - A two-month drug investigation in Gallatin by the 18th Judicial Task Force culminated this week with the seizure of a large amount of marijuana and thousands of dollars in cash. 

Christopher Spencer, 39, was arrested in connection with the raid. 

When the drug task force raided Spencer's Gallatin home, they found three pounds of pot and $21,000 in cash. Agents believe Spencer is a major supplier of pot in the area that was being shipped from Florida -- something agents say is a bit unusual. 

"He's definitely dealing in large amounts of marijuana," an agent told News 2's Andy Cordan. "That is the part we haven't quite put together. Most of the marijuana cases are all coming from the western states -- Colorado, Oregon, California. This is the first case we've had where we are dealing with marijuana coming from Florida."

During the raid, agents also recovered vacuum sealers, money counters, digital scales -- paraphernalia needed to separate and sell large qualities of the illegal drug. The task force also seized the suspect's expensive Harley-Davidson motorcycle and his 4x4 truck. 

"He is a decent size source in this area," the agent said. 

With the legalization of marijuana in the western United States, and the possibility it will one day be legal here in Tennessee, drug agents say they take a lot of grief for pot investigations like this one. 

"You know, there have been people killed over pounds of marijuana," the agent said. "You may not kill over seven grams, but you might get killed over 20 pounds."

But these undercover officers say pot operations dealing in pounds, ones like Spencer is accused of making, have the potential to be deadly -- not just from violence associated with the drug trade, but from weed laced with fentanyl. 

"We get scrutinized all the time because it is not a quote-unquote 'bad drug,' but here is where I disagree with those people," the agent said. "There has been marijuana here that has tested positive for fentanyl. If it has a lethal amount of fentanyl in it, it will be the last joint that person smokes -- and that is unfortunate when it comes to this stuff."

Spencer is now booked in the Sumner County Jail on a $75,000 bond. He is charged with possession of drugs with intent to distribute. 

A look at Spencer's TBI criminal history shows a lengthy history of arrests, including incidents of assault, burglary, and other drug charges. 


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