- 84-year-old tried to hide stash of cocaine in raid, police say
- Neighbors say she let son sell drugs so he could care for her
PUBLISHED: 19:58 GMT, 23 May 2013 | UPDATED: 13:51 GMT, 24 May 2013
She may not look like a typical drug dealer, but this 84-year-old woman who uses an oxygen tank has just been charged with drug trafficking and possession.
Lillie Smith is also charged with tampering with evidence after she tried to hide cocaine and marijuana that she had on her when police raided her Albuquerque apartment.
‘It’s definitely not something you see everyday,’ Sgt Aaron Williamson, of Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Office, said.
The charges relate to a warrant served at Smith’s apartment in 2011, when her son, Nathan Jones, was living with her.
Officers believed that her son was dealing drugs from their home.
‘There were scales, money, narcotics things of that nature that we generally find with drug trafficking,’ Sgt Williamson said.
Smith’s neighbors described the elderly woman as kind to a fault, and told KRQE she had allowed her son to deal drugs from her home because she wanted someone to take care of her.
However, police believe she was involved in the illegal operation and say she had cocaine and marijuana on her when they searched her home.
‘When detectives were on scene she did try to take the narcotics that were on her person out and stash them,’ Sgt Williamson said.
Jones was arrested on drug charges but because of her medical condition, his mother avoided being charged – until now.
A district attorney’s office filed charges against the elderly woman, and a grand jury returned an indictment in February.
After her arrest in April she was bonded out of jail and is due to make her next court appearance in July.
Previous court records show Smith pleaded guilty to drug charges in the 1990s, when she was in her 60s.
Smith is not the first pensioner to be arrested for drug dealing, but she may be the oldest. In April last year 73-year-old Darlene May was arrested in Oklahoma. She faces drug charges after police found 4lb of marijuana and $276,000 in cash at the home she shared with her son.
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