Three members of a Georgetown County family, including a man who was already in custody on a murder charge, are accused of smuggling drugs into jail.

Joshua, 25, Melinda, 43, and Lindsey Leday, 18, were charged with criminal conspiracy Monday, according to arrest warrants obtained by The Sun News from the Georgetown County Sheriff’s Office. Authorities said the family members worked together to smuggle drugs into the Georgetown County Detention Center.

While in Georgetown County jail, authorities said Joshua Leday conspired with his mother, Melinda Leday, and sister, Lindsey Leday, to sneak drugs into jail to sell to other inmates, according to the warrants.

Arrest warrants stated Melinda Leday sent envelopes containing fentanyl and meth to her son at the detention center. Joshua Leday was mailed an envelope containing 20 strips labeled buprenorphine naloxone, the warrants said. Buprenorphine naloxone, more commonly known as Suboxone, is a semi-synthetic opioid prescribed to ease withdrawal symptoms in people who have recently stopped using opioids.

Joshua Leday was charged with murder in connection with the February slaying of William Butler Jr., 69, who was found dead in his Andrews home. His truck, multiple firearms and jewelry were also stolen. Phillip Thomas Powers, 49, of Georgetown, was also charged in connection with Butler’s death. No bond has been set for Joshua Leday’s murder charge.

Joshua Leday is charged with criminal conspiracy, possession of contraband in a jail facility, and possession with intent to distribute fentanyl, meth, and a controlled substance for his role in smuggling drugs. He had spent time in Georgetown County jail in October and November for other drug charges, jail records show.

Lindsey and Melinda Leday were both arrested Monday. Lindsey Leday is charged with criminal conspiracy and her bond is set at $5,000.

Melinda Leday, who was out on bond for a weapons charge and two drug charges from March, is charged with furnishing contraband to a jail facility, criminal conspiracy, and possession of a controlled substance. Her bond is set at $10,000.

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Jenna Farhat is a reporter covering the South Strand. She has served as the managing editor and the news editor of The Sunflower, an independent, student-run newspaper covering Wichita State University. During her time there, she won several Kansas Collegiate Media awards for her investigative reporting and for feature writing. While she served as managing editor, The Sunflower won awards from the Associated College Press and the Kansas Sunshine Coalition for Open Government. She has been with The Sun News since 2020. She was born in Ohio and grew up in Wichita, Kansas. She is fluent in Arabic.

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