LUBBOCK, Texas — Police and prosecutors last week asked permission to permanently seize $34,500 cash taken from Tranard Lacharles Richardson, 23, of Lubbock.
An affidavit in court records said in November 2018 local law enforcement began to investigate Richardson for drug trafficking. As part of the background story, the affidavit said officers were called to his home in May 2020 in the 100 block of 76th Street for domestic violence.
Richardson was arrested for child neglect (or abandonment), unlawful carrying of a weapon and possession of marijuana. He was released on bond in just less than 24 hours.
Then, on June 18, the Texas Anti-Gang Center and the Drug Enforcement Administration set up a surveillance operation on Richardson at several places including his home in the 100 block of 76th Street.
Officers saw Richardson take a duffel bag from his home to another residence nearby. Officers got a search warrant and found the bag. According to the affidavit, it contained approximately 20 pounds of marijuana.
Marijuana was wrapped in bundles that were each labeled as $2,400 and “cookie crisp.” Officers also found a shoe box with $34,500 cash inside.
“The money also had a strong odor of marijuana,” the affidavit said.
As part of the search warrant, officers found two firearms, a replica bullet-proof vest, a 100-round drum for an assault type weapon, and ammunition.
Lubbock County court records do not yet indicate criminal charges against Richardson for the June 18 seizure. But the affidavit accuses Richardson of running a marijuana trafficking organization.
Richardson can petition the court with his side of the story to get the money back. If the request for seizure is granted, police and prosecutors will be able to keep the money in a drug forfeiture fund to be spent on law enforcement purposes.
As for Richardson’s arrest in May, those cases were still pending.