Old Hawthorne killing linked to high-grade pot trafficking operation
COLUMBIA - An affidavit filed in a drug trafficking case is providing new details on the 2017 death of Augustus Roberts at a home in Columbia's affluent Old Hawthorne subdivision.
In the document, DEA agent Steve Mattas outlines allegations against Craig Dewitt Smith Jr., who is accused in a felony conspiracy to distribute 1,000 kilograms or more of marijuana.
Mattas said the investigation was initiated after the "drug-related death" of Roberts on Dec. 11, 2017.
Roberts, who was 28, was renting a home on Lasso Circle in Old Hawthorne, where his body was found.
"The investigation revealed Roberts was involved in trafficking high-grade marijuana, and was killed during a home invasion where approximately 800 pounds of high-grade marijuana was stolen from a U-Haul truck parked in his driveway," Mattas said in his affidavit.
The document said the U-Haul was driven from the scene by one of the suspects and abandoned at the end of the cul-de-sac a short distance away. Approximately 94 pounds of high grade marijuana was recovered from the back of the U-Haul, and approximately 3,199 THC oil pens were recovered from a bedroom closet at Roberts’ residence and from the U-Haul, the affidavit said.
Mattas cites a confidential source who said they had been supplying Roberts with 280 to 350 pounds of marijuana every 3 to 4 weeks for about ten months, for a total as high as 2,060 kilograms of marijuana.
No one has ever been charged in Roberts' killing and police call it an open investigation.