Aiken Public Safety arrested a North Augusta man Saturday on multiple charges including the possession of a “suspicious package” that forced officers to call in the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division’s bomb unit to assist.
The driver, Darin Lee Mabrey, was stopped by an Aiken Public Safety officer for speeding around 8 a.m. and pulled into the Kroger parking lot on Whiskey Road.
An investigation revealed the vehicle was a breach of trust vehicle. An inventory of the vehicle resulted in the seizure of a quantity of a Schedule IV substance, a quantity of marijuana and a suspicious package, according to a press release.
Mabrey had an active Aiken County Sheriff’s Office warrant and was taken into custody for breach of trust of a motor vehicle; driving under suspension second offense; possession of a Schedule IV substance; possession of marijuana second offense; and providing false information to a public safety officer.
According to Public Safety Lt. Karl Odenthal, police contacted the South Carolina Law Enforcement Division, or SLED, as a matter of protocol after finding the package. Police also used caution tape to section off a large portion of the Kroger parking lot during the investigation, but customers were still allowed to enter the store.
After further investigation, SLED rendered the package safe and took it to its forensics lab in Columbia for further analysis.
Odenthal said the contents of the package cannot yet be revealed for security purposes.
“It’s not unusual for us to get these calls, but you never know what you’re going to have. So, just as a matter of safety, we want to have the right people in place and take the right steps,” he said.
In addition to Aiken Public Safety and SLED, North Augusta Public Safety also assisted in the investigation.
Derrek Asberry is a beat reporter with the Aiken Standard. He joined the paper in June 2013. He is originally from Vidalia, Ga., and a graduate of Georgia Southern University. Follow him on Twitter @ DerrekAsberry.