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      Theft investigation leads to drug bust

      Kerry Pruett

      Three people are behind bars after a search related to a theft turned up multiple different types of controlled substances and a handgun.

      Columbia Police Department Detectives served a search warrant at 806 Oak Lawn Drive just before 8 p.m. Friday in connection with a theft at the Walmart on W. Broadway on November 17.

      29-year-old John Hardy Jr. had been identified as the suspect in that incident.

      Upon arrival at the Oak Lawn residence, authorities detained Hardy and two others, 32-year-old John Curry and 37-year-old Kerry Pruett.

      When detectives entered the home they found what appeared to be methamphetamine and IV drug paraphernalia in plain view.

      A subsequent additional search warrant led to the discovery of heroin, methamphetamine, IV drug paraphernalia, materials to package drugs for sale, several different types of prescription pills and a handgun.

      In Hardy's vehicle, detectives also found several items reported stolen on November 2 from Lucky's Market on Providence Road.

      Hardy was arresed for two counts of felony distribution/delivery/manufacture of a controlled substance, three counts of felony possession of a controlled substance, unlawful possession of a concealable firearm, possession of drug paraphernalia and probation/parole warrant.

      Curry was arrested for possession of drug paraphernalia.

      Pruett was arrested for felony possession of a controlled substance.