MOUNT VERNON, Mo. — A 44-year-old defendant waived a preliminary hearing this week in Lawrence County Circuit Court and was ordered to stand trial on drug trafficking charges.

Freddie E. Jensen II, of rural Aurora, waived the hearing Monday on felony counts of second-degree trafficking in drugs, possession of a controlled substance and maintaining a public nuisance. Judge Matthew Kasper set Jensen’s initial appearance in a trial division of the court for Sept. 13.

According to a probable-cause affidavit, the charges stem from the serving of a search warrant March 9 on a group of trailer homes and outbuildings on a property near the intersection of farm roads 2170 and 1224 near Aurora.

Lawrence County sheriff’s deputies, assisted by a special weapons and tactics team, were looking for the defendant, who had active felony warrants for his arrest and had fled a deputy who tried to stop a motorcycle he was riding on Dec. 22, 2020, according to the affidavit.

The defendant purportedly had fled in the general direction of the property and had been seen by a witness riding into a field behind the trailers. A detective followed tracks through the field the next day to some brush where he found the motorcycle the defendant was believed to have been riding.

Further investigation determined that the fugitive was likely living in the compound, and the search warrant was obtained and served in March.

Jensen was taken into custody there with the assistance of the SWAT team, which used tear gas to effect his arrest. In clearing a trailer to which he fled just before being taken into custody, deputies recovered a jacket that he was believed to have been wearing and found a bag containing about a quarter-pound of methamphetamine in the jacket.

He also purportedly had $1,040 on his person, according to the affidavit.

A second search warrant was obtained for a trailer on the property believed to be the defendant’s residence and another 17.5 grams of meth were seized, according to the affidavit.

A search of a second trailer on the property — identified as the residence of the defendant’s 66-year-old father, Freddie Jensen Sr. — purportedly turned up another gram of meth and more than a half-pound of marijuana as well as a shotgun.

The elder Jensen faces counts of second-degree trafficking in drugs, delivery of a controlled substance, unlawful possession of a firearm, unlawful use of a weapon and maintaining a public nuisance. He has yet to have a preliminary hearing.

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