Couple accused of trying to sell meth to undercover officer
A Grand Junction husband and wife who have a history of drug offenses were arrested Saturday on suspicion they conspired to sell methamphetamine to an undercover police officer.
William Wayne Cliffton, 29, and Neva Jo Cliffton, 29, both of 2917 Dawn Drive, No. 3, were booked into Mesa County Jail after police executed a search warrant at their apartment Saturday evening and found meth and several items of drug paraphernalia, along with the couple’s 10-month-old son, according to an arrest affidavit.
The Clifftons could face charges of possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance, possession of a controlled substance and conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance. Neva Cliffton also could be charged with tampering with evidence, child abuse, possession of drug paraphernalia and violation of bail bond conditions. William Cliffton could face an additional charge of driving as a habitual traffic offender.
William and Neva Cliffton were being held on $50,000 and $10,000 bonds, respectively, according to jail records.
The arrest affidavit indicates that a Palisade police officer contacted a Western Colorado Drug Task Force officer after a man notified Palisade police that he had received a text message that read “Hey its Will just letting you and your old man know we can get ozs for 1250.”
The man told police that Will lived on Dawn Drive and that he had purchased meth from Will and his wife in the past. The officer wrote in the affidavit he believed the text meant that Will could supply meth for $1,250 an ounce. A second text sent a few hours later read “Hey its neva if you are needing let me know.”
An undercover task force officer replied with a text indicating he needed an ounce. He received a text indicating the ounce was on its way, the affidavit said.
Officers set up surveillance on the Clifftons’ apartment and watched a truck with two men pull up, then received a text that read “here.” Later, police saw a white car driven by William Cliffton leave the apartment. Officers stopped the car and arrested him, the affidavit said.
Police eventually executed a search warrant at the apartment and found Neva Cliffton in possession of the cellphone used to send the texts. Inside, they found a small plastic bag in a toilet that contained a trace amount of meth, a syringe hidden in the bathroom ceiling light fixture. They also found several other syringes, smoking pipes and other drug paraphernalia, the affidavit said.
Colorado Bureau of Investigation records show William Cliffton has been arrested numerous times in the Grand Valley since 1999. He was sentenced to prison on two separate occasions — in 2004 for two years and in 2005 for four years — for felony drug convictions. He was sent back to prison last year for a parole violation in the 2004 case.
Neva Cliffton’s arrest came just eight days after she was arrested by Grand Junction police on a drug-possession charge, CBI records show.