A Granite Falls man will serve a prison sentence of six to eight years following his conviction for trafficking opium/heroin during Catawba County Superior Court on Thursday, May 27, 2021.
Adam John Wheeler, 44, was given the sentence after he pleaded guilty to the offense. The Honorable Nathaniel J. Poovey, Superior Court Judge from Catawba County, imposed the active prison term for the defendant as well as a mandatory $50,000 fine.
Wheeler will serve his sentence in custody of the North Carolina Division of Adult Corrections.
Investigators with Hickory Police Department received information that another party was selling prescription pills (opiates) to the defendant. Wheeler was seen meeting with the person selling the pills on November 20, 2018, at his place of employment, a local bar.
After Wheeler and the other person parted ways, investigators stopped both of them. The defendant was found in possession of a large number of pills and a large sum of cash. He admitted during an interview with investigators that he had been buying and selling the pain pills.
Prior to Wheeler’s arrest, HPD received numerous tips and complaints from community members and leaders about his actions at his place of employment. Investigators conducted a three-month surveillance of the defendant, watching him buy and sell opiates from that location.
The person who sold the pills to Wheeler has been indicted on the same charge but has not yet appeared in Superior Court on the matter and is considered innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.
Sergeant Jeffrey Jenkins led the investigation for Hickory Police Department. Assistant District Attorney Jessica Phillips prosecuted the matter for the State.
CONTACT: Nathan Key