Drug charges follow Harbeson shooting by DSP trooper

Money, illegal drugs and weapons were seized during drug-related search warrant executions at two Harbeson area residences that brought two arrests early Tuesday morning. (Submitted photos/Delaware State Police)

HARBESON — Two men were arrested on drug charges following a search warrant entrance that resulted in a 50-year-old paraplegic man being shot to death by police Tuesday, authorities said.

Andrew Knox, 82, and Andrew A. Ayers, 54, were charged with multiple felonies after Delaware State Police ended a three week investigation into alleged illegal drug activity involving two residences, spokeswoman Master Cpl. Melissa Jaffe said.

Robert Knox, the son of Andrew Knox, died from wounds suffered after two troopers discharged firearms after police said he grabbed a nearby handgun while lying in bed and a struggle ensued. The incident took place at approximately 6:07 a.m. at a residence in the 22000 block of Harbeson Road, authorities said. The man died after being transported to Beebe Medical Center in Lewes.

Two persons were taken into custody without incident at the Harbeson Road home, police said. A search warrant was also executed by the Sussex County Drug Unit and Governor’s Task Force at a residence in the 28000 block of West Springfield Drive.

Police reported items seized at the Harbeson Road residence as:

• A loaded .22 caliber handgun, Ruger 9mm, Smith and Wesson 9mm, US Revolver .38 caliber handgun

• 815.82 grams of powder cocaine

• 51.93 grams of crack cocaine

• 1196.95 grams of marijuana

• 68.25 grams of crystal methamphetamine

• Over $23,000 in suspected drug proceeds

• Various prescription pills

• Various ammunition

Andrew A. Knox

Andrew A. Ayers

Two troopers were place on administrative leave following the shooting, as is DSP standard policy.

Andrew Knox was charged with possession of a firearm or ammunition by a person prohibited prior violent crime or felony and maintaining a drug property. Following arraignment before Justice of the Peace Court 2 in Rehoboth Beach he was released on $13,000 unsecured bond.

Police said the other occupant in the residence has not been charged at this time.

Police said the search warrant at a home on West Springfield Drive yielded:

• Over $24,000 in suspected drug proceeds

• 24.99 grams of crack cocaine

• 395.66 grams of marijuana

• A loaded Smith and Wesson .44 Magnum

Mr. Ayers was charged with manufactures, delivers, or possesses with intent to deliver a controlled substance in a Tier 4 quantity, possession of a firearm/destructive weapon if previously convicted of a violent felony, possession of firearm or ammunition by person prohibited, possesses with intent to manufacture, deliver a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia. He was arraigned before JP Court to and committed to the Sussex Correctional Institution in Georgetown on $100,200 secured bond.

Police said the case remained under investigation.

Reach staff writer Craig Anderson at canderson@newszap.com

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