Inmate on work detail arrested for drugs with intent By Lynn Hobbs

Mug shot – Antonio Craig Martin

An inmate on a work detail in Eatonton was arrested Thursday, Sept. 14 when he received a drug drop-off at the wrong time. Antonio Craig Martin, 47, of 701 Prison Boulevard in Sparta, was charged with Violation of the Georgia Controlled Substances Act – possession of marijuana, possession of methamphetamine and possession of Schedule IV Xanax, with intent to distribute. Martin was part of a Georgia Department of Corrections work detail working in Eatonton that day, and the crew he was working with was having lunch close to the old Putnam County Jail near the Veterans Memorial Wall Park. Eatonton Police Officer Harold “Buddy” Bowman was outside smoking a cigarette behind Eatonton Police Department when he saw one of the inmates, later identified as Martin, sneaking away from the others and around to the front of the old jail. Bowman saw a car come riding by and Martin ran along beside it. Bowman initially thought the inmate was about to get in the car and escape, Police Chief Kent Lawrence said, but then the officer saw him stuff something into his pants, then run to the prison van and put the item in the van. Because the other inmates and the GDOC officer were having lunch, Martin was the only inmate in the van when Bowman got to him. Bowman and DOC Officer Jason Wright searched the van and found “a large quantity” of methamphetamine, Xanax, marijuana and tobacco, according to the police report. Martin was booked and fingerprinted at Eatonton Police Department, taken to Putnam County Jail, and later released to the Georgia Department of Corrections at Hancock State Prison. According to the GDOC website, Martin has served in prison seven times since 1994 before this current incarceration. The current sentence began in October 2016 for burglary, criminal trespassing and obstruction of a law enforcement officer. Prior convictions for which he served include aggravated assault, theft by shoplifting, theft credit card, receiving stolen goods, and multiple counts of burglary. 

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