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Man wanted by Marshals charged with ditching meth, fentanyl during chase with Scotland Co. deputies

Tommie McLaurin, right, is accused of throwing out a PVC container holding meth and fentanyl during a chase with the Scotland County Sheriff's Office. Photos courtesy SCSO

LAURINBURG — A man known to local and federal law enforcement in two states is accused of tossing drugs during a vehicle pursuit that nearly spilled into Richmond County.

Investigators with the Scotland County Sheriff’s Office say deputies were working with the U.S. Marshals Service to find 40-year-old Tommie Brinda McLaurin, who was wanted on federal probation violation.

(Editor’s note: Some records have McLaurin’s middle name spelled as “Brenda.”)

Several detectives and a deputy had gone to McLaurin’s home and were approaching when McLaurin reportedly pulled into the driveway and turned around and took off.

Investigators say McLaurin led deputies on a six-mile chase with speeds exceeding 100 mph, finally ending near a residence on Quicktown Road, off of N.C. 381 near the Richmond County line.

During the chase, McLaurin allegedly threw out a PVC container. Inside, detectives reportedly found: 117 grams (4.09 ounces) of methamphetamine; 96 grams (3.36 ounces) of fentanyl; and 32 dosage units of suboxone.

McLaurin was arrested and charged with five felonies: fleeing to elude arrest with a motor vehicle; maintaining a vehicle for a controlled substance; two counts of trafficking a Schedule II controlled substance; possession with intent to sell or deliver a Schedule III controlled substance.

The SCSO also charged McLaurin with a misdemeanor count of possession of drug paraphernalia.

He was booked into the Scotland County Detention Center under a $100,000 secured bond. His court date on those charges is not yet known.

McLaurin is also being held without bond on the federal probation violation, according to SCSO.

Online court records show McLaurin is already facing charges of trafficking opium or heroin, possession of heroin, maintaining a place for a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia. His next court appearance on those charges is scheduled for Feb. 1, 2023.

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Records with the N.C. Department of Public Safety Division of Adult Correction show McLaurin was first convicted in 2007 of trafficking a Schedule II controlled substance in Scotland County and served nearly 25 months in prison.

McLaurin was given probation in 2012 when he was convicted of delivering or selling a Schedule II controlled substance, maintaining a place for a controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia and misdemeanor possession of a Schedule VI controlled substance.

According to the U.S. Justice Department, McLaurin was sentenced to 46 months in federal prison— followed by three years of supervised release — after pleading guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm.

That conviction stemmed from 2016 when officers and agents from multiple departments — including the Rockingham Police Department, Richmond County Sheriff’s Office, Scotland County Sheriff’s Office and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives — executed a search warrant at his home in Bennettsville, South Carolina, and found a loaded stolen pistol.

Online records with the U.S. Bureau of Prisons show McLaurin was released on Nov. 20, 2020.

South Carolina court records show criminal charges against McLaurin in Marlboro County were dropped in 2017.

All defendants facing criminal charges are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

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