BY KELLI PEACOCK DUNN
An undercover drug investigation led to the arrest of a father, son, and the son’s girlfriend last week.
Albert James “A.J.” Kearce, 52, and his son, Alan “Joseph” Kearce, 23, have been charged with trafficking in hydrocodone over 28 grams, but less than 200 grams. Both men, along with Joseph’s girlfriend, Pamala A. McMillan, 50, have all been charged with conspiracy to traffic in hydrocodone.
According to the Calhoun County Sheriff’s Office, members of the Calhoun-Liberty Drug Task Force utilized a confidential source to make a controlled purchase of 56 hydrocodone pills from A.J., Joseph and McMillan. Lt. Mark Mallory and Lt. Tim Partridge met with the source and A.J. reportedly called the source during this time and arranged to sell the pills for $5 each. A.J. allegedly indicated the pills belonged to his son, Joseph, and he had to keep four pills to prove on a urinalysis test that he was taking his prescribed medication. A.J. also told the source to bring $1.10 he needed to fill the prescription, as well as gas money.
The source met A.J. at his South Pear Street home with $10 to cover the gas and his prescription cost. They agreed to meet at the Calhoun County Library once A.J. obtained the pills. A short time later, A.J., Joseph and Pamela arrived at the library parking lot, along with another female in the vehicle. A.J. approached the source’s car and exchanged the pills for $300. During the transaction, he was asked if the others knew what was going on and said they did. The pill bottle had a prescription label with Alan J. Kearce’s name. The source called and spoke with Joseph Kearce, thanking him for selling the pills.
Once the deal was done and the suspects drove away, an arrest team consisting of Cpl. Eddie Dalton and BPD Ofc. Maxwell initiated a traffic stop and recovered the $300 in buy money.
Lt. Mallory interviewed Joseph who denied knowledge that his father was going to sell his pills. However, he was overheard on a jail phone later asking a pastor to bring him bail money and allegedly remarked that the pills were sold because they needed money.
Also interviewed was A.J. who said he wanted to accept responsibility for selling the pills and said his son had no knowledge of it. However, he admitted when asked that McMillian was with him when he first met with the source the day before in Bristol to discuss selling the pills. A.J. was also asked about his own prescription for hydrocodone. He stated he receives 90 pills per month, then trades them for sex and sells them.
Both A.J. and Joseph are being held on a $5000 bond. McMillian’s bond is set at $10,000. The other woman in the vehicle was not charged.