$25,000, stolen guns seized in 4 separate Durham County operations; 2 arrested, 2 wanted


Demareo Bass and Jorge Flores Benitez (Durham County Sheriff’s Office)

DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) — More than $25,000 in cash, narcotics and two stolen handguns were seized in four separate operations in Durham County Wednesday night, according to the sheriff’s office.

Two men were arrested and two more are wanted.

The first arrest came just before 11 p.m. when investigators in the area of Roxboro Road and Club Boulevard saw someone “commit multiple traffic violations,” the sheriff’s office said. A traffic stop was conducted and the driver of the vehicle, Demareo Lamont Bass, 26, of Durham, was found to be in the possession of crack cocaine and marijuana, officials said.

Bass was charged with possession of schedule II controlled substance and possession of schedule VI controlled substance. A magistrate gave Bass a $3,000 bond, which he posted, the sheriff’s office said.

The second arrest occurred just after 11 p.m. when investigators in the area of the 3000-block of Guess Road witnessed someone “conduct multiple suspected drug violations,” according to the sheriff’s office.

The vehicle the suspect was a passenger in was pulled over and Jorge Flores Benitez, 24, of Wendell, ran from the vehicle, authorities said. A short foot chase ensued and he was taken into custody.

Benitez was found to be in possession of more than 47 grams of heroin, cash, crack cocaine, and a stolen firearm, the sheriff’s office said.

Benitez was arrested and charged with two counts of trafficking opium/heroin, possession with intent to manufacture/sell/deliver heroin, possession with intent to sell/deliver cocaine, possession of drug paraphernalia, resisting a public officer, possession of a firearm by a felon, possession of a stolen firearm, and carrying a concealed gun. According to officials, the weapon that was recovered had been reported stolen from a Durham County home on July 24.

A magistrate gave Benitez a $2 million bond. He made his first court appearance Thursday morning, authorities said.

Two more people are wanted by the sheriff’s office following two incidents on Wednesday night where the suspects were able to evade capture, officials said.

The first incident occurred when a deputy was patrolling the area of Lynn Road and Highway 70 when she tried conducting a traffic stop on a vehicle, according to authorities. The driver fled from the area and their vehicle was found abandoned in a nearby apartment complex, the sheriff’s office said. Officials said a search of the vehicle was conducted and drugs were found inside. A K-9 found what turned out to be a stolen firearm outside the vehicle. The investigation into this incident is ongoing, officials said.

The second incident in which the suspect escaped happened in the area of N. Roxboro Street and Monk Road. According to authorities, a deputy patrolling the area attempted to stop a vehicle, which fled into a subdivision nearby. The driver turned onto a dead-end street and abandoned the car, officials said.

A K-9 searched the area but could not find the suspect. The sheriff’s office said they know the identity of the suspect. “A large amount of drugs and over $24,000 in cash” was recovered during the search, authorities said.

The investigations into these incidents are ongoing and the sheriff’s office asks that if you have information about these or any crimes contact to contact the sheriff’s office tipline 919-560-7151 or Crimestoppers at 919-683-1200.

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